There's been a settlement between Allergan plc, of Dublin, and plaintiffs in an opioid trial set for October in Ohio. Allergan will pay $1.9 million to Summit County and $3.1 million to Cuyahoga County. In a public statement, Allergan said it "believes that settling with these plaintiffs is in its interest in light of anticipated time and defense costs for this first multi-defendant bellwether trial in the federal multidistrict litigation." The company also noted that it "has not actively marketed or promoted any opioid products since 2013."
Common stock shares of Eyegate Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Waltham, Mass., split 1-for-15 last Friday, Aug. 30. With the split, Eyegate complied with minimum bid price requirements to maintain its Nasdaq Capital Market listing. The stock's closing bid price must be at least $1 per share for a minimum of 10 consecutive business days prior to Sept. 16. Eyegate's phase IIb study of its lead asset, combination drug/device candidate EGP-437 to treat pain and inflammation in patients following cataract surgery, hit a stumbling block last year. Although EGP-437 showed a higher rate of success than vehicle at all time points, the co-primary endpoints of proportion of subjects with an anterior chamber cell count of zero at day seven and the proportion of subjects with a pain score of zero at day one did not show statistical significance – largely because the vehicle group outperformed its expected response. (See BioWorld, Feb. 6, 2018.)
Novelion Therapeutics Inc., of Vancouver, asked Nasdaq for a hearing about the company's potential delisting and received a reprieve of until Sept. 12. After that, its common stock will be suspended from trading unless a Nasdaq Hearing Panel extends the stay, pending the hearing, which is set for Oct. 3.
Wntresearch AB, of Stockholm, and The Sage Group plc, of Newcastle Upon Tyne, England, will collaborate to identify and engage potential partners before the phase II readout of Foxy-5, a synthetic hexapeptide with a formylated N-terminus, as neo-adjuvant therapy in subjects with Wnt-5a low colon cancer. The clinical trial is set to end in March 2022. Sage specializes in strategy and negotiations for research companies.
Vical Inc., of San Diego, said its stockholders voted to approve the proposals required to complete its merger with Boulder, Colo.-based Brickell Biotech Inc. at a special meeting held Aug. 30. Vical had been weighing strategic alternatives since last year's phase II failure of VCL-HB01, its Vaxfectin-formulated plasmid DNA vaccine against herpes simplex virus type 2. Completion of the deal led the company to terminate president and CEO Vijay Samant, who had led the company since November 2000, and Chief Financial Officer Anthony Ramos, who joined the company in February 2005 as its Corporate Controller. Brickell CEO Robert Brown, a veteran of Eli Lilly & Co., and R. Michael Carruthers, Brickell's CFO, will take over those roles in the combined company, which will adopt the Brickell name and begin trading on Nasdaq under the symbol BBI on Sept. 3. In addition, five directors resigned their roles on Vical's board. Samant and director Gary Lyons retained their board seats. (See BioWorld, June 12, 2018.)