ASLAN Pharmaceuticals Reports First Quarter 2020 Financial Results and Provides Corporate Update
SINGAPORE, May 11, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ASLAN Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:ASLN, TPEx:6497), a clinical-stage immunology and oncology focused biopharmaceutical company developing innovative treatments to transform the lives of patients, today reported financial results for the first quarter ended 31 March 2020 and provided an update on its clinical activities.
Dr Carl Firth, Chief Executive Officer, ASLAN Pharmaceuticals, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about unprecedented changes and affected many worldwide. We have been putting strategies in place to mitigate risks to our development programs, including opening sites in different geographies where restrictions are easing. We are also taking steps to ensure that we emerge from this situation stronger and ready to initiate our planned phase 2b study of ASLAN004 for atopic dermatitis in 1H 2021, building our US presence as we grow a team there and prepare to file an Investigational New Drug application with the US FDA.”
First quarter 2020 and recent business highlights
- As announced on 13 April, recruitment for the second dose cohort of the multiple ascending dose (MAD) study in atopic dermatitis (AD) has been paused in light of government restrictions in Singapore to contain the spread of COVID-19. ASLAN is closely monitoring government guidance around the restrictions, which were extended until 1 June 2020 on 21 April.
- ASLAN still expects to announce unblinded, interim data from the study later this year but will review the timelines when the tightened restrictions are lifted in Singapore and recruitment into the study recommences.
- To accelerate recruitment, ASLAN has identified several clinical sites in Australia that could join the ongoing MAD study.
- Two abstracts on varlitinib have been accepted for presentation at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) virtual congress on 29 May. An abstract on the results from the TreeTopp study was accepted for poster presentation and the second abstract, on the comparison of therapeutic responses by using CT imaging, will be available in the virtual library.
Anticipated upcoming milestones for ASLAN004
- Interim, unblinded data from the 3 dose cohorts (up to 24 patients) expected in 2H 2020, and initiation of the expansion cohort (an additional 18 patients).
- Opening of clinical trial sites in Australia and filing of IND application with the US FDA in the middle of 2020.
- Completion of MAD clinical trial in moderate-to-severe AD patients in 1H 2021.
- Initiation of Phase 2b study of ASLAN004 for AD in 1H 2021.
First quarter 2020 financial highlights
- Cash used in operations for the first quarter of 2020 was US$5.2 million compared to US$7.2 million in the same period in 2019.
- Research and development expenses were US$2.4 million in the first quarter of 2020 compared to US$4.4 million in the first quarter of 2019. The decrease was driven by the completion of clinical studies related to varlitinib and lower manufacturing expenses.
- General and administrative expenses were US$1.0 million in the first quarter of 2020 compared to US$2.3 million in the first quarter of 2019. The decrease was primarily due to earlier restructuring efforts which resulted in a decrease in headcount and staffing costs.
- Net loss for the first quarter of 2020 was US$3.0 million compared to a net loss of US$4.3 million for the first quarter of 2019.
- Cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments totaled US$16.9 million as of 31 March 2020 compared to US$22.2 million as of 31 December 2019. Weighted average shares outstanding for the first quarter of 2020 was 190.0 million compared to 160.2 million for the first quarter of 2019. One American Depositary Share is the equivalent of five ordinary shares.
1 Financial Statements in US dollars are prepared by the company and are unaudited by certified public accountant as of 31 Mar 2020.
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About ASLAN Pharmaceuticals
ASLAN Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:ASLN, TPEx:6497) is a clinical-stage immunology and oncology focused biopharmaceutical company developing innovative treatments to transform the lives of patients. Led by a senior management team with extensive experience in global development and commercialisation, ASLAN has a clinical portfolio comprised of a first in class monoclonal therapy, ASLAN004, that is being developed in atopic dermatitis and other immunology indications, and a small molecule inhibitor targeting oncology. ASLAN’s partners include Almirall, Array BioPharma, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and CSL. For additional information please visit www.aslanpharma.com.
Forward looking statements
This release and the accompanying financial information, if any, contains forward-looking statements. These statements are based on the current beliefs and expectations of the management of ASLAN Pharmaceuticals Limited and/or its affiliates (the "Company"). These forward-looking statements may include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the Company’s business strategy, the Company’s plans to develop and commercialise its product candidates, the safety and efficacy of the Company’s product candidates, the Company’s plans and expected timing with respect to regulatory filings and approvals, and the size and growth potential of the markets for the Company’s product candidates. The Company’s estimates, projections and other forward-looking statements are based on management's current assumptions and expectations of future events and trends, which affect or may affect the Company’s business, strategy, operations or financial performance, and inherently involve significant known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results and the timing of events could differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements as a result of these risks and uncertainties, which include, without limitation the risk factors described in the Company’s US Securities and Exchange Commission filings and reports (Commission File No. 001-38475), including the Company’s prospectus dated May 8, 2018 filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on such date.
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