PCS12852

On August 19, 2020, we entered into a License Agreement ("Yuhan License Agreement") with Yuhan Corporation ("Yuhan"), pursuant to which we acquired an exclusive license to develop, manufacture and commercialize PCS12852 (formerly known as YH12852) globally, excluding South Korea.

PCS12852 is a novel, potent and highly selective 5-hydroxytryptamine 4 (5-HT4) receptor agonist. Other 5-HT receptor agonists with less 5-HT4 selectivity have been shown to successfully treat gastrointestinal (GI) motility disorders such as chronic constipation, constipation-predominant irritable bowel syndrome, functional dyspepsia and gastroparesis. Less selective 5-HT4 agonists, such as cisapride, have been either removed from the market or not approved because of the cardiovascular side effects associated with the drugs binding to other receptors, especially 5-HT receptors other than 5-HT4.

We plan to meet with the FDA in early 2021 to further define the clinical development program required for the PCS12852 product and discuss a Phase 2A proof of concept randomized, placebo-controlled study for PCS12852 in a gastrointestinal (GI) motility dysfunction disorder (e.g., post-operative ileus also called gastrointestinal dysfunction (POGD), opioid induced constipation, chronic idiopathic constipation). The purpose of the Phase 2A trial would be to better define a dosage regimen of PCS128552 that could be potentially efficacious and safe in a larger pivotal study. The patients with these types of conditions have an abnormal pattern of GI motility in the absence of mechanical obstruction. For example, POGD is characterized by nausea, vomiting, abdominal distension and/or delated passage of flatus or stool, following surgery (most commonly with abdominal surgery). It is the most common cause of prolonged length of stay in hospital following GI surgery, leading to an increase in healthcare costs. The only FDA-approved drug to treat POGD is a mu-opioid receptor antagonist alvimopan (Entereg®), which is only available through a restricted program for short-term use due to the potential risk of myocardial infarction with long-term use.

Two clinical studies have been previously conducted by Yuhan with PCS12852. In the first-in-human clinical trial (Protocol YH12852-101), the initial safety and tolerability of PCS12852 were evaluated after single and multiple oral doses in healthy subjects. PCS12852 increased stool frequency with faster onset when compared to prucalopride, an FDA approved drug for the treatment of chronic idiopathic constipation. Compared to the group receiving prucalopride (an FDA approved drug for the treatment of chronic idiopathic constipation), the PCS12852 dose groups showed higher stool frequency for 24 hours following single dosing and had faster onset of spontaneous bowel movements (SBMs) with comparable or relatively higher Bristol Stool Form Scale score (lower stool consistency) for 24 hours following first dosing. In addition, based on an increase of ≥ 1 SBM/week from baseline during 7-day multiple dosing, the PCS12852 dose group had a higher percent of patients with an increase than the prucalopride group. All doses of PCS12852 were safe and well tolerated and no serious adverse events (SAE) occurred during the study. The most frequently reported adverse events (AEs) were headache, nausea and diarrhea which were temporal, manageable, and reversible within 24 hours. There were no clinically significant changes in platelet aggregation or ECG parameters including no sign of QTc prolongation in the study. The second study conducted was a Phase 1/2A clinical trial (Protocol YH12852-102) to evaluate the safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of PCS12852 immediate release (IR) formulation and delayed release (DR) formulation after multiple oral dosing. PCS12852 was safe and well tolerated after single and multiple administrations. The most frequent AEs for both the IR and DR formulations of PCS12852 were headache, nausea and diarrhea, but the incidences of these AEs were comparable with those of the prucalopride 2 mg group. These AEs, which were transient and mostly mild in severity, are also commonly observed with other 5-HT4 agonists. Both formulations of PCS12852 also showed pharmacologic activity as assessed using various pharmacodynamic parameters for stool assessment.

Yuhan had also conducted extensive toxicological studies for the product that demonstrated that the product is safe for use and can be moved quickly into Phase 2 studies.