Exopharm has focused on R&D along with key appointments during the start of the new financial year to support its ambitious goal of becoming a leading global exosome medicine company.

Shares in exosome medicine company Exopharm (ASX: EX1) peaked almost 12% today after a positive Q1FY22 trading update, with the company making significant advances in R&D and key appointments to drive future growth.

Exopharm has taken several crucial steps forward in Q1 with its LEAP – Ligand-based Exosome Affinity Purification –  technology. LEAP is showing promise in reducing a major obstacle in the advancement of exosomes as a new form of  medicine for a range of diseases including degenerative diseases and cancer.

An inability to easily purify a large scale of exosomes from source material, which can include blood or cell media grown in a laboratory, had been holding back the sector.

LEAP uses a chromatography-based purification process to reduce the bottleneck and is the only technology available to provide large quantities of high-purity exosomes.

The company has kicked off the FY22 financial year with business development activities and building momentum around LEAP.


Collaboration with Japanese regenerative medicine company

Global manufacturer and regenerative medicine company Showa Denko is evaluating LEAP under a formal feasibility study agreement. If the research project within Showa Denko’s Yokohama regenerative medicine business unit is successful there is potential for a future commercial agreement.

Exopharm has also made advances in its bid for a US patent to protect LEAP. The US Patent and Trademark office has upgraded the application to “Notice of Allowance” mailed, indicating the examiner is ready to issue the requested patent.

Exopharm has applied for a LEAP patent in 12 jurisdictions, including the US. The LEAP patent was granted in Russia in June.


Key appointments to drive future growth

Exopharm has made several key appointments into its leadership team as it works to reach a growing network of global and regional strategic partners and international capital markets.

In July, the company appointed David Oxley as president International and Key Management Personnel (KMP).  Oxley has more than 20 years professional experience, including complex cross-border licensing expertise, product candidate development and approval, commercialisation, and capital markets.

In August, Exopharm appointed US-based Dr Jennifer King as an independent non-executive director. King has more than 20 years of operating experience in the biopharmaceutical industry with a focus on cutting edge technologies and treatment for rare diseases.

Last month the company announced Swiss-based Dr Johannes Mühl as senior vice president Finance and KMP.  Mühl has a vast network in the life sciences industry and is also a successful private investor in the biotech sector. His role is to build the profile of Exopharm in the biotech community and help shape the company’s pipeline products and finance plan.

Exopharm has also appointed David Franks as company secretary through Automic.


Exopharm invests in R&D 

Exopharm ended Q1 with $9m cash, down from $12.7m in the previous quarter. Operating cash outflows for the quarter was $3.2m, an increase from $2.9m in the previous quarter.

However, funds were predominantly spent in research and development, including product advancement, manufacture and testing programs along with related salaries.

Exopharm received an R&D tax incentive rebate for FY20/22 of $3.9m after the quarter ended which consequently was not reflected in the latest cashflow update.


Exopharm builds financial value two ways

Exopharm is developing its own exosome medicines along with helping other companies use exosomes for their own pipeline and solve their drug delivery problems.

These two verticals of developing its own medicinal products and deals with partners and licensees are at the forefront of building Exopharm’s financial value.

Exosomes are a growing class of medicine, recognised as a different and particularly important means for delivery of gene therapies including gene editing constructs and viral vectors such as AAV.

Exopharm has secured $12 million in capital raising to accelerate the commercialisation of the LEAP platform and support in-house pipeline R&D.

Shares in Exopharm were up 11.88% in morning trade at 56 cents.

This article was developed in collaboration with Exopharm, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.