Addex Therapeutics' ($ADXN) stock price has soared after the Swiss biotech reported positive data from a mid-stage trial of its Parkinson's drug and its chief executive talked up his efforts to strike a collaboration deal.
The stock closed Thursday up 84.7%, according to Google Finance.
Addex CEO Bharatt Chowrira says the company is positioned to bring home a badly needed partnership deal and he hopes to execute on his goal of inking a collaboration deal by October or November.
"We have been in discussions with a number of companies, getting them to up to speed ahead of the data," Chowrira tells FierceBiotech. And while some Big Pharma companies have been reducing their R&D operations in CNS, he adds, there is still significant interest in licensing in a late-stage product like this, in which a successful Phase IIb study could set the stage for an approval based on positive results from a single Phase III study. But that would have to be worked out with a partner.
On Wednesay, the biotech reported that it met the safety and efficacy goals of a Phase IIa study of dipraglurant involving 76 patients, showing that the drug could combat the uncontrolled movements related to use of the common Parkinson's treatment levodopa, or levodopa-induced dyskinesia. The drug, which targets metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5), could be used in combination with levodopa or as a solo therapy for movement disorders, the company said.
"We believe these Phase IIa data in patients with moderate to severe PD-LID are encouraging, demonstrating promising efficacy and addressing some lingering safety concerns," noted analysts at Jefferies.
Swiss drug giant Novartis ($NVS) has a similar mGluR5 drug called mavoglurant in mid-stage development for levodopa-induced dyskinesia in Parkinson's patients, the company reported in January. There are currently no approved therapies for this condition, which is a complication from long-term use of levodopa, according to Novartis.
Addex's rival drug could aid the company in its efforts to recover from a setback in 2009, when the biotech hit the brakes on development of an experimental drug for migraines and a heartburn trigger, Reuters reported.
Editor's Note: John Carroll contributed to this report. It has been updated to include quotes from Chowrira and additional analysis.