During the second quarter, Stayble Therapeutics focused primarily on the recruitment of patients to the ongoing phase IIb study with the injection treatment STA363. In addition, key employees have been recruited to the company and a high presence has been maintained towards potential partners. In an interview with BioStock, Stayble Therapeutics’ CEO Andreas Gerward talks about the most important events of the second quarter and the company’s plans for the autumn.
Gothenburg-based Stayble Therapeutics has developed the drug candidate STA363 for the treatment of patients with back pain due to degenerative disc disease. The goal of the injection treatment is to address the underlying causes of back pain: leakage of inflammatory substances and instability of the discs.
Last week, the company published its report for the second quarter. During the period, Dr Sara Richardson was recruited to the newly created role of Vice President CMC and Regulatory Affairs to strengthen the company in manufacturing issues and interactions with regulatory authorities. In addition, Ulf Björklund was elected new Chairman of the Board and Gudrun Anstrén and Gunnar Fernström as board members.
Increased recruitment capacity for the phase IIb study
Stayble Therapeutics has previously presented positive phase Ib results with STA363 showing that the treatment is safe and tolerable and that it induces connective tissue transformation, which is the company’s strategy for treating the degenerated disc.
Based on these results, a phase IIb clinical trial with STA363 was started last year in patients with degenerative disc disease. According to an update on the study from April, the goal is to present top line results from the phase IIb study in the second half of 2022.
The number of study clinics involved in the phase IIb study has increased recently, according to the latest quarterly report. In addition, there has been an increased patient flow and activity in the included clinics, which indicates that the pace will now be able to increase further as society continues to open up.
Interview with CEO Andreas Gerward
BioStock contacted Stayble Therapeutics CEO Andreas Gerward to learn more about the second quarter highlights, how to continue to accelerate the phase IIb study and the company’s plans for the autumn.
Andreas, what events in the second quarter do you want to highlight?
– During the second quarter, the main focus has been on increased patient recruitment in the ongoing phase IIb study where we have seen a positive trend among the study clinics.
– We have also participated in various partnering conferences where we continue to see great interest in the company among potential partners. We have ongoing dialogues with several potential partners, and we are continuously meeting new interested partners.
Could you briefly tell me about the company’s current financial position?
– With the oversubscribed issue that the company carried out at the beginning of the year, our financial position is good. We have the resources we need to effectively drive the company forward in the best way.
– What percentage of the total study population do you think you will achieve before we put 2021 behind us?
– The goal is to recruit all patients to our phase IIb study during the autumn.
– We are currently seeing higher activity and patient flow at the now increased number of centres that can operate free of Covid restrictions. This is a good sign indicating that we will be able to pick up the pace as society continues to open up. During the period, we have worked to include more clinics in all study countries in order to increase recruitment capacity. We have also built up an extensive network of clinics that will refer patients to the participating clinics. In addition to this, we are working on new ways of recruiting, including through social media.
Finally, what does Stayble Therapeutics’ agenda look like for the rest of 2021?
– Autumn 2021 will be a very important period for Stayble, where patient recruitment and continued relationship building with potential partners is our top priority.
– With the strengthened resources we now have, the team can focus fully on the development of the company with the goal of offering patients a simple effective treatment that focuses on the root causes of their pain.
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