Market Update COVID-19
The Company remains committed to its corporate strategy and focused on delivering on its anticipated milestones during the year ahead. However, the Company is actively planning for disruptions that may lead to delays in meeting some of these objectives.
Understandably, COVID-19 has caused delays in clinical research and manufacturing activities globally. The Australian Department of Health has provided COVID-19 guidance for clinical trials.
"The focus should remain on the safety and well-being of those most at risk in our institutions and communities." "Any new recruitment should reflect the most current public health advice on social distancing." "Researchers and sponsors should educate themselves about novel approaches to the conduct of clinical trials, such as decentralised trials (i.e. teletrials) and hybrid models in which participants can be recruited and participate remotely and data can be captured remotely via available technology."
Given the disruptions, Anatara is reviewing possible paths forward and gathering information on realistic trial delivery so that we may be able to commence our upcoming human clinical trial as soon as practicable. Anatara will proceed with a planned decentralised trial design, allowing participants to be recruited and participate remotely. It is anticipated that this trial design will enable recruitment of participants and higher retention rates than traditional centralised trials. At the current time, Anatara anticipates a delay, to the second half of 2020, for the commencement of its clinical trial in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) for its Gastrointestinal ReProgramming (GaRP) over-the-counter medicine.
We continue to advance our licensing discussions with potential animal health partners for our core animal asset, Detach(R), with the aim of meeting our partnering milestone of end Q2 2020. We do not anticipate a material delay due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Anatara will monitor developments around COVID-19 and if needed, will update the market accordingly.
As at 31 March 2020, Anatara held cash and equivalents of 3.3 million. No commitments have been made for future in-licensing opportunities at this time and as a precautionary measure, the Company has put in place measures to reduce all non-critical expenditure. The anticipated delay in commencement of the GaRP clinical trial extends Anatara's cash runway. The Company will review funding needs in the second half of the year.
Furthermore, in line with current federal and state COVID-19 guidelines, the Company has implemented a number of measures to protect the wellbeing of staff:
- Employee training on infectious disease awareness and working-from-home-effectively
- Suspension of all corporate travel until further notice
- Encouraging staff to work from home where appropriate
- Non-attendance at investor events, industry conferences and trade shows (except where virtual participation is provided) until further notice
Anatara CEO, Mr Steven Lydeamore said, "During these uncertain times, the Company remains optimistic that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic will be limited to medium-term delays in accomplishing our corporate objectives. We continue to work remotely on our upcoming GaRP clinical trial activities and maintain ongoing discussions with potential animal health and human consumer health partners."
"The Company remains highly encouraged by the successful preclinical data reported for GaRP to date, providing the Company with every confidence going into a human clinical study later this year."
About Anatara Lifesciences Ltd
Anatara Lifesciences (ASX:ANR) is developing and commercialising innovative, evidence-based products for gastrointestinal health where there is significant unmet need. Anatara is a life sciences company with expertise in developing products for animal and human health. Anatara is focused on building a pipeline of human gastrointestinal health products. Underlying this product development program is our commitment to delivering real outcomes for patients and strong value for our shareholders. For more information, please visit www.anataralifesciences.com.
Anatara Lifesciences Ltd