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GALT > SEC Filings for GALT > Form 10-Q on 9-Nov-2012All Recent SEC Filings

Show all filings for GALECTIN THERAPEUTICS INC

Form 10-Q for GALECTIN THERAPEUTICS INC


9-Nov-2012

Quarterly Report


Item 2. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations

In addition to historical information, the following Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations contains forward-looking statements as defined under Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and is subject to the safe harbor created therein for forward-looking statements. Such statements include, but are not limited to, statements concerning our anticipated operating results, research and development, clinical trials, regulatory proceedings, and financial resources, and can be identified by use of words such as, for example, "anticipate," "estimate," "expect," "project," "intend," "plan," "believe" and "would," "should," "could" or "may." All statements, other than statements of historical facts, included herein that address activities, events, or developments that the Company expects or anticipates will or may occur in the future, are forward-looking statements, including statements regarding: plans and expectations regarding clinical trials; plans and expectations regarding regulatory approvals; our strategy and expectations for clinical development and commercialization of our products; potential strategic partnerships; expectations regarding the effectiveness of our products; plans for research and development and related costs; statements about accounting assumptions and estimates; expectations regarding liquidity and the sufficiency of cash to fund operations through 2013; our commitments and contingencies; and our market risk exposure. Forward-looking statements are based on current expectations, estimates and projections about the industry and markets in which Galectin Therapeutics operates, and management's beliefs and assumptions. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve certain known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such statements. Such risks and uncertainties are related to, without limitation, our early stage of development; our


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dependence on outside capital; uncertainties related to our technology and clinical trials, intellectual property protection, uncertainties of regulatory approval requirements for our products; competition and stock price volatility in the biotechnology industry, limited trading volume for our stock, concentration of ownership of our stock, and other risks detailed herein and from time to time in our SEC reports, including our Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011. The following discussion should be read in conjunction with the accompanying consolidated financial statements and notes thereto of Galectin Therapeutics appearing elsewhere herein.

Overview

We are a development-stage company engaged in drug development to create new therapies for cancer and fibrotic disease. Our drug candidates are based on our method of targeting galectin proteins, which are key mediators of biologic and pathologic function. We use naturally occurring plant materials to create complex carbohydrates with specific molecular weights and pharmaceutical properties. Using these unique carbohydrate-based candidate compounds that bind and inhibit galectin proteins, we are undertaking the pursuit of therapies for indications where galectins have a demonstrated role in the pathogenesis of a given disease. We focus on diseases with serious, life-threatening consequences to patients and those where current treatment options are limited. Our strategy is to establish clinical development programs that add value to our business in the shortest period of time possible and to seek strategic partners when a program becomes advanced and requires additional resources.

We attempt to leverage our scientific and development expertise as well as established relationships with outside sources to achieve cost-effective and efficient development. We are pursuing a development pathway to clinical enhancement and commercialization for our lead compounds in immune enhancement for cancer therapy as well as in both liver fibrosis and fatty liver disease. All of our proposed products are presently in development, including pre-clinical and clinical trials.

2012 Common Stock and Warrant Offering and Reverse Split

On March 22, 2012, in anticipation of completing a public offering of securities, we effected a one-for-six reverse stock split of our common stock. All common share and per unit amounts in this report, including the financial statements, have been retroactively adjusted to reflect the reverse split. Our common stock began trading on The NASDAQ Capital Market under the symbol GALT on March 23, 2012, and the units and warrants that we sold in the offering began trading on that exchange under the symbols GALTU and GALTW, respectively, on March 28, 2012.

On March 28, 2012, we completed the public offering in which we issued 2,666,722 shares of common stock and related warrants exercisable until March 28, 2017, at $5.63 per share to purchase 1,333,361 shares of common stock for gross proceeds of $12.0 million (net cash proceeds of 10.4 million).

Our Drug Development Programs

We have two compounds in development, one intended to be used in cancer therapy and the other intended to be used in the treatment of liver fibrosis and fatty liver disease. These two compounds are produced from completely different natural starting materials, both possessing the property which lends itself to binding to and inhibiting galectin proteins. GM-CT-01, our lead product candidate for cancer therapy, is a proprietary linear polysaccharide polymer comprised of mannose and galactose that has a precisely defined chemical structure and is derived from a plant source. GR-MD-02, our lead product for treatment of liver fibrosis and fatty liver disease with inflammation and fibrosis, is a proprietary complex polysaccharide polymer possessing both linear and globular structures, which also is derived from a plant source.

We believe the mechanism of action for GM-CT-01 and GR-MD-02 is based upon interaction with, and inhibition of, galectin proteins, which are expressed at high levels in certain pathological states including inflammation, fibrosis and cancer. While GM-CT-01 and GR-MD-02 are capable of binding to multiple galectin proteins, we believe that they have the greatest affinity for galectin-3, the most prominent galectin implicated in pathological processes. Blocking galectin in cancer and liver fibrosis has specific salutary effects on the disease process, as discussed below.

GM-CT-01 - Galectin Inhibition in Cancer Therapy

We believe the potential exists for galectin inhibition to play an important role in cancer therapy. Galectin proteins, particularly galectin-1 and galectin-3, have been shown to be highly expressed in the majority of cancers and have multiple roles in promoting cancer progression, including tumor cell invasion, metastasis, angiogenesis, and tumor evasion of the immune system. GM-CT-01 has progressed in development for the therapy of colorectal cancer and is currently in a Phase I/II clinical trial as a combination therapy with a tumor vaccine in patients with advanced melanoma. The current developmental approach for GM-CT-01 is to enhance the activity of the immune system against the cancer.


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In May 2012, we initiated a Phase I/II clinical trial of GM-CT-01 in Belgium in combination with a tumor vaccine in patients with advanced melanoma, a deadly skin cancer. The Belgian Federal Agency of Medicine and Health Products, or FAMHP, granted approval for this clinical trial, which is being conducted at three centers in Belgium and one in Luxembourg. There are two primary cohorts of patients in this study, one where GM-CT-01 is given intravenously (Cohort 1) and a second cohort where GM-CT-01 is given both intravenously and directly injected into a cutaneous metastasis (Cohort 2). Because of patient availability, Cohort 1 is expected to be enrolled faster than Cohort 2. For each cohort, 6 patients will be enrolled in stage one of the study, and if at least one out of six patients has a response (PR or CR by RECIST criteria), the remaining patients will be enrolled up to a total of 23 per cohort. We expect the first stage of Cohort 1 of this trial (involving 6 evaluable patients) to be completed in the second quarter of 2013 and that it will provide data that could deliver an indication of efficacy. Depending on the results of Stage 1, which is defined as a partial or complete response by RECIST criteria in at least one out of six patients, the study could continue enrollment to complete Stage 2 (46 total patients), initiate a new Phase II trial based on positive results or be halted because of lack of efficacy. Stage 1 of the trial is being funded by the Cancer Centre at the Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc and Stage 2 will require funding from the Company, currently estimated at approximately $1.0 million. The Phase I/II clinical trial in Belgium is being conducted under an EMA-approved IMPD, but there is an open IND under the FDA for GM-CT-01 and this trial has been reported to the FDA under that IND.

There are potentially additional pathways for the development of GM-CT-01 for use in treatment of cancer. GM-CT-01 was found to be generally safe when studied in a Phase I clinical trial in end-stage cancer patients with multiple tumor types alone and in combination with 5-Fluorouracil (5-FU), which is an FDA-approved chemotherapy used for treatment of various types of cancer. Three Phase II studies were conducted, but were only partially completed due to financing issues at the time. DAVFU-003 was terminated in 2007. Although only partially completed, when compared to historical controls, the data collected for DAVFU-003 suggested a favorable effect of the therapy, since the controls had an overall survival of 4.6 months. DAVFU-006 was a Phase II, open-label clinical trial in line 1 patients with locally advanced and unresectable or metastatic colorectal cancer (who were unable to tolerate intensive chemotherapy), who were treated with a regimen of GM-CT-01, 5-FU, leucovorin and AvastinŽ. Ten patients were enrolled in this study. DAVFU-006 was terminated in March 2010. Finally, DAVFU-007 was a Phase II, multi-center, open-label clinical trial to evaluate the efficacy and safety of GM-CT-01 in combination with 5-FU when administered as first line chemotherapy in patients with advanced biliary cancer. Seventeen patients were enrolled in this study. This study was stopped in March 2010. Based on these completed Phase I and partially completed Phase II clinical trials, we are exploring additional potential indications for the use of GM-CT-01 in combination with cancer chemotherapy. We are seeking potential strategic partners to assist in researching the use of GM-CT-01 in the amelioration of 5-FU related side effects. Such a partnership would permit additional clinical trials in the U.S., which would not be started until a partnership was consummated.

We attempted to gain regulatory approval of GM-CT-01 for use in combination with 5-FU containing chemotherapy regiments for metastatic colorectal cancer in Colombia. This approach had been recommended to the Company by key oncology opinion leaders in Colombia and by PROCAPS S.A. ("PROCAPS"), a Colombia-based pharmaceutical company. There has been no approval of GM-CT-01 in a major region such as the U.S. or Europe and it was determined that approval from the regulatory authority in Columbia (INVIMA) would require additional clinical trial data. Although the Company worked with PROCAPS to design a Phase III clinical trial, a satisfactory plan could not be agreed upon and we terminated the Agreement with PROCAPS (as described below), effective September 29, 2012, and have no current plans to continue attempts to gain approval of GM-CT-01 in Columbia. We had not taken into account projections for any potential revenues from this agreement in our financing plans.

GR-MD-02 - Liver Fibrosis

The second main initiative in our development strategy is the application of galectin inhibition in connection with liver fibrosis, a condition that leads to cirrhosis. We believe that GR-MD-02 has the potential to treat nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and other forms of liver fibrosis. The driving factor for our commitment to galectin inhibition for fibrosis is scientific evidence that strongly suggests that galectin-3 is essential for the development of liver fibrosis in animals. Published data show that mice lacking the galectin-3 gene are incapable of developing liver fibrosis in response to toxin insult to the liver and in fatty liver disease. Moreover, mice that do not have the galectin-3 gene are resistant to lung and kidney fibrosis.

We have evaluated the ability of GR-MD-02 to block galectin-3 in animal models of liver fibrosis, the conclusions of which yielded positive results. Our pre-clinical data show that GR-MD-02 may have a therapeutic effect on liver fibrosis as shown in several relevant animal models. Therefore, we chose GR-MD-02 as the lead candidate in a development program targeted initially at fibrotic liver disease associated with NASH. GR-MD-02 is currently being evaluated in pre-clinical toxicology and pharmacology studies with the aim of filing an IND with the FDA by January 2013 for initiating human studies in patients with NASH. In early 2013, upon filing an IND, we plan to start a Phase I clinical trial with GR-MD-02 in patients with NASH to assess safety and preliminary evidence of efficacy in humans. By the end of 2013 or early 2014, depending on the results of the Phase I study, we plan on initiating a Phase II clinical trial to assess the efficacy of GR-MD-02 in patients with NASH and advanced liver fibrosis with expected top-line clinical results by the end of 2014 or early 2015.


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In July 2012, we received a notice of issuance from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for the patent "Galactose-prolonged polysaccharides in a formulation for antifibrotic therapies". This patent covers key methods of derivation and use for our carbohydrate-based galectin inhibitor compound for use in patients with chronic liver disease associated with the development of fibrosis, established liver fibrosis or end-stage scarring, or cirrhosis. The major claim is for a method of obtaining the galectin inhibitor compound, obtaining a composition for parenteral administration in an acceptable pharmaceutical carrier and administering to a subject having at least one of the following: chronic liver disease associated with the development of fibrosis, established liver fibrosis or cirrhosis. The use covers inhibiting or slowing the progression of fibrosis or the reversal of fibrosis. GR-MD-02, is covered by this patent and it provides opportunities for development of additional compounds in the class.

Agreement with PROCAPS S.A.

On March 25, 2010, we granted PROCAPS S.A. (in the form of a definitive term sheet) exclusive rights to market and sell GM-CT-01 to treat cancer in Colombia, South America. PROCAPS is an international, privately held pharmaceutical company based in Barranquilla, Colombia. In October 2010, we received a payment of $200,000 and shipped GM-CT-01 to PROCAPS to be used by PROCAPS to undertake initial steps contemplated by the term sheet. We recorded the $200,000 payment from PROCAPS as deferred revenue on the condensed consolidated balance sheet as of December 31, 2011, to be recognized when the remaining deliverables of the agreement were completed.

On October 18, 2011, we entered into a Collaboration, Supply, Marketing and Distribution Agreement (the "Agreement") with PROCAPS. The Agreement granted PROCAPS first negotiation rights to enter into similar agreements in other Central and South American countries. We were to be the sole manufacturer and supplier of GM-CT-01 to PROCAPS. The Agreement obligated PROCAPS to procure regulatory approvals necessary for the marketing and sale of GM-CT-01 naming us as the owner of such approvals to the extent permitted by law, or alternatively hold the approvals for our benefit. PROCAPS must pay us a stated fee for each dose it purchases and royalties at an incremental rate determined by annual net sales of GM-CT-01. We retain all intellectual property rights to GM-CT-01 and related products and PROCAPS may not produce, modify, reverse engineer, or otherwise interfere with the GM-CT-01 compound. PROCAPS may not manufacture or sell products that compete with GM-CT-01 during the term of the Agreement and for five years thereafter.

PROCAPS had not obtained approval to sell GM-CT-01 in Columbia as required by the Agreement and, as they were in material breach of the Agreement, we terminated the Agreement, effective September 29, 2012. With no further obligations under the Agreement, we recognized the $200,000 payment as Other Income in the Statements of Operations during the three and nine month periods ended September 30, 2012.

Results of Operations

Three and Nine Months Ended September 30, 2012 Compared to Three and Nine Months Ended September 30, 2011

Research and Development Expense.

Three Months
Ended Nine Months Ended 2012 as Compared to 2011
September 30, September 30, Three Months Nine Months
2012 2011 2012 2011 $ Change % Change $ Change % Change
(In thousands, except %)

Research and development $ 1,409 $ 655 $ 3,525 $ 2,690 $ 754 115 % $ 835 31 %

We generally categorize research and development expenses as either direct external expenses, comprised of amounts paid to third party vendors for services, or all other research and development expenses, comprised of employee payroll and general overhead allocable to research and development. We subdivide external expenses between clinical programs and pre-clinical activities. We consider a clinical program to have begun upon acceptance by the FDA, or similar agency outside of the United States, to commence a clinical trial in humans, at which time we begin tracking expenditures by the product candidate. Clinical program expenses comprise payments to vendors related to preparation for, and conduct of, all phases of the clinical trial, including costs for drug manufacture, patient dosing and monitoring, data collection and management, oversight of the trials and reports of results. Pre-clinical expenses comprise all research and development amounts incurred before human trials begin, including payments to vendors for services related to product experiments and discovery, toxicology, pharmacology, metabolism and efficacy studies, as well as manufacturing process development for a drug candidate.

We have two product candidates, GM-CT-01 and GR-MD-02. GM-CT-01 is in a Phase I/II clinical trial at this time, which is being conducted in collaboration with the Cancer Centre at the Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc and the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research in Belgium. GR-MD-02 is currently being evaluated in pre-clinical toxicology and pharmacology studies with the aim of obtaining an IND from the FDA by January 2013. We will then seek to gain FDA approval for Phase I and Phase II studies of GR-MD-02.


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Our research and development expenses for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2012, as compared to the three and nine months ended September 30, 2011, were as follows:

                                                    Three Months            Nine Months
                                                       Ended                   Ended
                                                   September 30,           September 30,
                                                   2012       2011       2012        2011
                                                               (in thousands)
   Direct external expenses:
   Clinical programs                             $     94     $ 110     $   617     $   332
   Pre-clinical activities                            885       209       1,639         583
   All other research and development expenses        430       336       1,269       1,775

                                                 $  1,409     $ 655     $ 3,525     $ 2,690

Pre-clinical expenses for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2012, increased compared to the same periods in 2011, due primarily to increased pre-clinical activity on our fibrosis program as we prepare to file an IND with the FDA by January 2013. Clinical programs remained relatively unchanged for the three months ended September 30, 2012 as compared to the same period in 2011 and increased during the nine months ended September 30, 2012 as compared to the same period in 2011 primarily due to drug manufacturing. The overall decrease in other research and development expenses during the nine months ended September 30, 2012 as compared to the same period in 2011 is due to decreased stock-based compensation ($651,000) partially offset by increased salary and overhead costs ($55,000).

Both the time required and costs we may incur in order to commercialize a drug candidate that would result in material net cash inflow are subject to numerous variables, and therefore we are unable at this stage of our development to forecast useful estimates. Variables that make estimates difficult include the number of clinical trials we may undertake, the number of patients needed to participate in the clinical trial, patient recruitment uncertainties, trial results as to the safety and efficacy of our product, and uncertainties as to the regulatory agency response to our trial data prior to receipt of marketing approval. Moreover, the FDA or other regulatory agencies may suspend clinical trials if we or an agency believes patients in the trial are subject to unacceptable risks, or find deficiencies in the conduct of the clinical trial. Delays or rejections may also occur if governmental regulation or policy changes during our clinical trials or in the course of review of our clinical data. Due to these uncertainties, accurate and meaningful estimates of the ultimate cost to bring a product to market, the timing of costs and completion of our program and the period during which material net cash inflows will commence are unavailable at this time. However, we expect to continue to have substantial research and development expenses for the foreseeable future as we continue to develop our products.

General and Administrative Expense.

Three Months
Ended Nine Months Ended 2012 as Compared to 2011
September 30, September 30, Three Months Nine Months
2012 2011 2012 2011 $ Change % Change $ Change % Change
(In thousands, except %)

General and administrative $ 1,487 $ 1,378 $ 3,992 $ 4,347 $ 109 8 % $ (355 ) (8 )%

General and administrative expenses consist primarily of salaries including stock-based compensation, legal and accounting fees, insurance, investor relations, business development and other office related expenses. The primary reasons for the increase for the three months ended September 30, 2012 as compared to the same period in 2011 is due to increased stock-based compensation ($192,000) and investor relations and business development costs ($40,000), partially offset by decreased legal expense ($144,000) due primarily to a litigation settlement during the three months ended September 30, 2011. The primary reasons for the decrease during the nine months ended September 30, 2012 as compared to the same period in 2011 is due to decreased legal expenses ($427,000) due to our rebranding and litigation settlement during the nine months ended September 30, 2011, decreased business development ($263,000) related to our attempts to gain approval for GM-CT-01 in Columbia, partially offset by increased stock-based compensation ($134,000) and public company and other overhead costs ($166,000).

As of October 1, 2012, the Company relocated its headquarters from Massachusetts to Georgia. On a going forward basis we expect this move will decrease our operating lease expenses by approximately $226,000 annually.


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Other Income and Expense.

During the three and nine months ended September 30, 2012, other income and expense consisted primarily of the $200,000 payment from PROCAPS which was previously accounted for as deferred revenue and recognized upon the termination of the PROCAPS Agreement, as previously described.

Other income and expense for the nine months ended September 30, 2011 included an expense of $515,000, respectively, primarily related to the change in fair value of warrant liabilities. The Company had no warrant liabilities as of September 30, 2012 or during the three and nine months then ended.

Liquidity and Capital Resources

As described above in the Overview and elsewhere in this Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q, we are in the development stage and have not generated any revenues. Since our inception on July 10, 2000, we have financed our operations from proceeds of public and private offerings of debt and equity. As of September 30, 2012, we raised a net total of $68.8 million from these offerings. At September 30, 2012, we had $11.1 million of unrestricted cash and cash equivalents available to fund future operations. We will require more cash to fund our operations and believe we will be able to obtain additional financing. However, there can be no assurance that we will be successful in obtaining such new financing or, if available, that such financing will be on terms favorable to us. If we are unsuccessful in raising additional capital before the end of 2013, we may be required to cease operations or seek bankruptcy protection.

Net cash used in operations increased by $1,615,000 to $5,749,000 for the nine months ended September 30, 2012, as compared to $4,134,000 for the nine months ended September 30, 2011. Cash operating expenses increased principally due to increased research and development activities related our ongoing clinical and preclinical activities with GM-CT-01 and GR-MD-02, partially offset by decreased general and administrative expenses.

Cash provided by investing activities during the nine months ended September 30, 2012 consisted of $10,000 related to a decrease in restricted cash as compared to a $5,000 increase in restricted cash and equipment purchases of $5,000 during the nine months ended September 30, 2011.

Net cash provided by financing activities was $10,403,000 during the nine months ended September 30, 2012 as compared to $6,197,000 during the nine months ended September 30, 2011, due to a public offering we completed in the first quarter of 2012. On March 28, 2012, we sold 2,666,722 shares of common stock and related warrants to purchase 1,333,361 shares of common stock for gross proceeds of $12.0 million (net proceeds $10.4 million).

Payments Due Under Contractual Obligations

The following table summarizes the payments due under our contractual
obligations at September 30, 2012, and the effect such obligations are expected
to have on liquidity and cash flow in future periods:



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