Naurex posts the positive PhIIb data that helped it reel in $80M

Fresh from raising $80 million and being featured in The New York Times, Naurex has posted Phase IIb data to back up its belief it will be the company that finally turns the receptor affected by party drug Special K into a viable target for treatment of depression.

Evanston, IL-based Naurex hinted the data for its NMDA receptor modulator--GLYX-13--were solid when it revealed it had raised $80 million for a Phase III trial last week. Now, it has presented the first detailed breakdown of the numbers. The trial gave GLYX-13 to 386 people who had failed to respond to other drugs and continued until a clinical response was seen, which happened in 53% of patients. These 53% of people stayed in the trial--the rest left--and started taking a placebo to force a relapse.

More than two-thirds of people relapsed within two weeks and were put on to a weekly dose of either GLYX-13 or placebo. The one-third of people who were slower to relapse started a biweekly dosing schedule. Almost half of people who received biweekly doses of GLYX-13 were in remission--as defined by the HDRS scale--at the end of six weeks of treatment. Across the whole trial population, GLYX-13 outperformed placebo.

Importantly, the trial suggests the effect of GLYX-13 wanes slowly. Short-lived effects have scuttled other NMDA drugs, but Naurex reported HDRS-17 scores stayed low even in patients who received 10 weeks of placebo after their initial regimen of GLYX-13. The challenge now is to replicate the success in Phase III, but Naurex has done enough already to capture the attention if the psychiatric community.

"It's definitely the most promising compound in the depression space in terms of effect and durability," Harry Tracy, the publisher of the newsletter NeuroPerspective, told the NYT.

- read the release
- and the NYT feature