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LIXT > SEC Filings for LIXT > Form 10-K on 21-Mar-2014All Recent SEC Filings

Show all filings for LIXTE BIOTECHNOLOGY HOLDINGS, INC.

Form 10-K for LIXTE BIOTECHNOLOGY HOLDINGS, INC.


21-Mar-2014

Annual Report


ITEM 7. MANAGEMENT'S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS

Overview

On June 30, 2006, Lixte Biotechnology, Inc., a privately-held Delaware corporation ("Lixte") incorporated on August 9, 2005, completed a reverse merger transaction with SRKP 7, Inc. ("SRKP"), a non-trading public shell company, whereby Lixte became a wholly-owned subsidiary of SRKP. On December 7, 2006, SRKP amended its Certificate of Incorporation to change its name to Lixte Biotechnology Holdings, Inc. (the "Company"). Unless the context indicates otherwise, Lixte and Holdings are hereinafter referred to as the Company.

For financial reporting purposes, Lixte was considered the accounting acquirer in the merger and the merger was accounted for as a reverse merger. Accordingly, the historical financial statements presented herein are those of Lixte. The stockholders' equity section of SRKP was retroactively restated for all periods presented to reflect the accounting effect of the reverse merger transaction. All costs associated with the reverse merger transaction were expensed as incurred.

The Company is considered a "development stage company" under current accounting standards, as it has not yet commenced any revenue-generating operations, does not have any cash flows from operations, and is dependent on debt and equity funding to finance its operations.

The Company's common stock is presently traded on the OTCQB operated by the OTC Markets under the symbol "LIXT".

Recent Developments

On January 28, 2014, the Company's Board of Directors extended to June 30, 2014 its outstanding warrants to acquire 1,748,800 shares of the Company's common stock at $0.50 per share that were issued to investors and the placement agent in connection with offerings that closed on February 10, 2009, March 2, 2009 and April 6, 2009. All other outstanding warrants had previously been extended to June 30, 2014 on September 11, 2012. Included in such extension were warrants to acquire 815,920 shares of common stock scheduled to expire on February 10, 2014, warrants to acquire 312,880 shares of common stock scheduled to expire on March 2, 2014, and warrants to acquire 620,000 shares scheduled to expire on April 6, 2014.

On January 28, 2014, the Company offered to all of its warrant holders an inducement to exercise early by reducing the exercise price of currently outstanding warrants by 50%, if exercised on a cash basis by April 15, 2014. The exercise prices of the warrants before reduction were $0.50 per share (2,253,800 warrants) and $0.75 per share (4,575,000 warrants).

Going Concern

The Company's consolidated financial statements have been presented on the basis that it is a going concern, which contemplates the realization of assets and satisfaction of liabilities in the normal course of business. The Company is in the development stage and has not generated any revenues from operations to date, and does not expect to do so in the foreseeable future. The Company has experienced recurring operating losses and negative operating cash flows since inception, and has financed its working capital requirements during this period primarily through the recurring sale of its equity securities and the exercise of outstanding warrants. As a result, the Company's independent registered public accounting firm, in its report on the Company's 2013 consolidated financial statements, has raised substantial doubt about the Company's ability to continue as a going concern.

The Company's ability to continue as a going concern is dependent upon its ability to raise additional capital and to ultimately achieve sustainable revenues and profitable operations. The Company's consolidated financial statements do not include any adjustments that might result from the outcome of these uncertainties.

At December 31, 2013, the Company had not yet commenced any revenue-generating operations. All activity through December 31, 2013 has been related to the Company's formation, capital raising efforts, and research and development activities. As such, the Company has yet to generate any cash flows from operations, and is dependent on debt and equity funding from both related and unrelated parties to finance its operations. Prior to June 30, 2006, the Company's cash requirements were funded by advances from the Company's founder aggregating $92,717.

Because the Company is currently engaged in research at an early stage, it will likely take a significant amount of time to develop any product or intellectual property capable of generating revenues. As such, the Company's business is unlikely to generate any sustainable revenues in the next several years, and may never do so. Even if the Company is able to generate revenues in the future through licensing its technologies or through product sales, there can be no assurance that the Company will be able to achieve positive earnings and cash flows from operations.

The Company's major focus in 2014 is to continue a Phase 1 clinical trial of its lead phosphatase inhibitor, LB-100. The Phase 1 clinical trial of LB-100 began in April 2013 with the entry of patients into the clinical trial, and is being carried out by nationally recognized comprehensive cancer centers. The cost of a clinical trial depends to a considerable extent upon the rate of patient accrual, as well as the number of patients entered into the clinical trial. If screening tests render a patient ineligible for the clinical trial, the screening costs are realized, but patient accrual is not advanced. Accordingly, the costs needed to complete a clinical trial with the planned number of participants may increase under such circumstances.

The Company estimates that the Phase 1 clinical trial will be completed within the next 12 to 21 months (sometime between March and December 2015) and will cost a total of approximately $2,000,000, which will be paid to or through Theradex, the CRO responsible for the clinical development of LB-100. As of December 31, 2013, the Company has incurred $278,721 of these clinical trial costs, which have been included in research and development expenses in the statement of operations for the year ended December 31, 2013.

At December 31, 2013, the Company had cash and money market funds aggregating $481,154. The Company believes that it has sufficient funds to continue with the Phase 1 clinical trial of LB-100 and to fund its operating plans through April 30, 2014. Accordingly, in order to continue to fund the Company's operations in 2014 and thereafter, the Company will need to raise additional capital, likely in the form of equity, aggregating at least $2,000,000 to fund operations for the next twelve months. Market conditions present uncertainty as to the Company's ability to secure additional funds. There can be no assurances that the Company will be able to secure additional financing on acceptable terms or at all. If cash resources are insufficient to satisfy the Company's ongoing cash requirements, the Company would be required to scale back or discontinue its technology and product development programs and/or clinical trials, or obtain funds, if available (although there can be no certainty), through strategic alliances that may require the Company to relinquish rights to certain of its products, or to discontinue its operations entirely.

The amount and timing of future cash requirements will depend on the pace of the Company's programs, particularly the completion of the Phase 1 clinical trial of LB-100. After completion of the Phase 1 clinical trial, the next step will be to determine the anti-cancer activity of LB-100, in combination with a widely used anti-cancer drug, against a specific type of human cancer in Phase 2 clinical trials. Subject to the availability of funds, the Company intends to continue with its Phase 1 clinical trial of LB-100, continue the two drug development programs currently in process, and expand its patent portfolio, including the maintenance of its applications for international protection of lead compounds of both the LB-100 and LB-200 series.

Recent Accounting Pronouncements

In February 2013, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (the "FASB") issued ASU No. 2013-04, Liabilities (Topic 405): Obligations Resulting from Joint and Several Liability Arrangements for Which the Total Amount of the Obligation Is Fixed at the Reporting Date. This guidance provides direction for the recognition, measurement, and disclosure of obligations resulting from joint and several liability arrangements for which the total amount of the obligation within the scope of this guidance is fixed at the reporting date, except for obligations addressed within existing guidance in U.S. GAAP. The guidance requires an entity to measure those obligations as the sum of the amount the reporting entity agreed to pay on the basis of its arrangement among its co-obligors and any additional amount the reporting entity expects to pay on behalf of its co-obligors. This guidance will become effective for the Company for fiscal years, and interim periods within those years, beginning after December 15, 2013. The Company does not expect the adoption of this guidance to have a material impact on the Company's consolidated financial statements.

In March 2013, the FASB issued ASU No. 2013-05, Foreign Currency Matters (Topic 830). This guidance resolves the diversity in practice relating to financial reporting involving a parent entity's accounting for the cumulative translation adjustment of foreign currency into net income when a parent either sells a part or all of its investment in a foreign entity or no longer holds a controlling financial interest in a subsidiary or group of assets that is a nonprofit activity or a business (other than a sale of in substance real estate or conveyance of oil and gas mineral rights) within a foreign entity. In addition, this guidance resolves the diversity in practice for the treatment of business combinations achieved in stages (sometimes also referred to as step acquisitions) involving a foreign entity. This guidance will become effective for the Company for fiscal years, and interim periods within those years, beginning after December 15, 2013. The Company does not expect the adoption of this guidance to have a material impact on the Company's consolidated financial statements.

In July 2013, the FASB issued ASU 2013-11, Income Taxes (Topic 740):
Presentation of an Unrecognized Tax Benefit When a Net Operating Loss Carryforward, a Similar Tax Loss, or a Tax Loss, or a Tax Credit Carryforward Exists (a consensus the FASB Emerging Issues Task Force). This guidance provides direction on financial statement presentation of unrecognized tax benefit when a net operating loss carrforward, a similar tax loss, or a tax credit carryforward exists. The FASB's objective in issuing this guidance was to eliminate diversity in practice resulting from a lack of guidance on this topic in current U.S. GAAP. This guidance applies to all entities with unrecognized tax benefits that also have tax loss or tax credit carryforwards in the same tax jurisdiction as of the reporting date. This guidance will become effective for the Company for fiscal years, and interim periods within those years, beginning after December 15, 2013. The Company does not expect the adoption of this guidance to have a material impact on the Company's consolidated financial statements.

Management does not believe that any other recently issued, but not yet effective, authoritative guidance, if currently adopted, would have a material impact on the Company's financial statement presentation or disclosures.

Concentration of Risk

The Company periodically contracts with directors, including companies controlled by or associated with directors, to provide consulting services related to the Company's research and development and clinical trial activities. Agreements for these services can be for a specific time period (typically one year) or for a specific project or task, and can include both cash and non-cash compensation. The only such contract that represents 10% or more of general and administrative or research and development costs is described below.

On September 21, 2012, the Company entered into a work order agreement with Theradex, the CRO responsible for the clinical development of the Company's lead compound, LB-100, to manage and administer the Phase 1 clinical trial of LB-100. Theradex is an international CRO that provides professional services for the clinical research and development of pharmaceutical compounds. The Phase 1 clinical trial of LB-100, which began during April 2013 with the entry of patients into the clinical trial, is being carried out by nationally recognized comprehensive cancer centers, and is estimated to be completed within the next 12 to 21 months (sometime between March and December 2015). The Phase 1 clinical trial is estimated to cost a total of approximately $2,000,000, with such payments expected to be divided approximately evenly between payments to Theradex for services rendered and payments for pass-through costs for the clinical center's laboratory costs and investigator costs. Total costs charged to operations for services paid to Theradex pursuant to this arrangement, which were first incurred in 2013, were $278,721 for the year ended December 31, 2013, or approximately 32% of research and development costs for the year ended December 31, 2013. The costs charged to operations for amounts paid to Theradex for services relating to the Phase 1 clinical trial of LB-100 are expected to represent a larger percentage of total research and development costs during the fiscal years ending December 31, 2014 and 2015. Costs pursuant to this agreement are included in research and development costs in the Company's consolidated statements of operations. On May 2, 2011, Dr. Robert B. Royds, the founder, Chairman of the Board and Medical Director of Theradex, was appointed to the Company's Board of Directors. Dr. Royds died on March 23, 2013. The death of Dr. Royds is not expected to have any impact on the management and administration of the Phase 1 clinical trial.

In addition to the above described agreement with Theradex, the Company has also from time to time engaged Theradex to assist the Company in bringing LB-100 through the FDA approval process and to provide other services. Total fees charged to operations for services paid to Theradex pursuant to such engagements were $14,964 and $163,661 for the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, respectively, or approximately 2% and 16% of research and development costs for the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, respectively, and are included in research and development costs in the Company's consolidated statements of operations.

Critical Accounting Policies and Estimates

The Company prepared its consolidated financial statements in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America. The preparation of these financial statements requires the use of estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities and the disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities at the date of the financial statements and the reported amount of revenues and expenses during the reporting period. Management periodically evaluates the estimates and judgments made. Management bases its estimates and judgments on historical experience and on various factors that are believed to be reasonable under the circumstances. Actual results may differ from these estimates as a result of different assumptions or conditions.

The following critical accounting policies affect the more significant judgments and estimates used in the preparation of the Company's consolidated financial statements.

Research and Development

Research and development costs consist primarily of fees paid to consultants and outside service providers, patent fees and costs, and other expenses relating to the acquisition, design, development and testing of the Company's treatments and product candidates.

Research and development costs are expensed as incurred over the life of the underlying contracts on the straight-line basis, unless the achievement of milestones, the completion of contracted work, or other information indicates that a different expensing schedule is more appropriate. Payments made pursuant to research and development contracts are initially recorded as advances on research and development contract services in the Company's balance sheet and then charged to research and development costs in the Company's statement of operations as those contract services are performed. Expenses incurred under research and development contracts in excess of amounts advanced are recorded as research and development contract liabilities in the Company's balance sheet, with a corresponding charge to research and development costs in the Company's statement of operations. The Company reviews the status of its research and development contracts on a quarterly basis.

Patent Costs

Due to the significant uncertainty associated with the successful development of one or more commercially viable products based on the Company's research efforts and any related patent applications, all patent costs, including patent-related legal and filing fees, are expensed as incurred.

Stock-Based Compensation

The Company periodically issues stock options and warrants to officers, directors and consultants for services rendered. Options vest and expire according to terms established at the grant date.

The Company accounts for stock-based payments to officers and directors by measuring the cost of services received in exchange for equity awards based on the grant date fair value of the awards, with the cost recognized as compensation expense on the straight-line basis in the Company's financial statements over the vesting period of the awards.

The Company accounts for stock-based payments to consultants by determining the value of the stock compensation based upon the measurement date at either (a) the date at which a performance commitment is reached or (b) at the date at which the necessary performance to earn the equity instruments is complete.

Options granted to members of the Company's Scientific Advisory Committee and to outside consultants are revalued each reporting period to determine the amount to be recorded as an expense in the respective period. As the options vest, they are valued on each vesting date and an adjustment is recorded for the difference between the value already recorded and the then current value on the date of vesting.

The fair value of stock-based compensation is affected by several variables, the most significant of which are the life of the equity award, the exercise price of the security as compared to the fair market value of the common stock on the grant date, and the estimated volatility of the common stock over the term of the equity award.

The Company recognizes the fair value of stock-based compensation awards in general and administrative costs and in research and development costs, as appropriate, in the consolidated statement of operations.

Income Taxes

The Company accounts for income taxes under an asset and liability approach for financial accounting and reporting for income taxes. Accordingly, the Company recognizes deferred tax assets and liabilities for the expected impact of differences between the financial statements and the tax basis of assets and liabilities.

The Company records a valuation allowance to reduce its deferred tax assets to the amount that is more likely than not to be realized. In the event the Company was to determine that it would be able to realize its deferred tax assets in the future in excess of its recorded amount, an adjustment to the deferred tax assets would be credited to operations in the period such determination was made. Likewise, should the Company determine that it would not be able to realize all or part of its deferred tax assets in the future, an adjustment to the deferred tax assets would be charged to operations in the period such determination was made.

Plan of Operation

General Overview of Plans

The Company's original focus was the development of new treatments for the most common and most aggressive type of brain cancer of adults, glioblastoma multiforme ("GBM"), and the most common cancer of children, neuroblastoma. The Company has expanded the scope of its anti-cancer investigational activities to include the most common brain tumor of children, medulloblastoma, and also to several other types of more common cancers. This expansion of activity is based on documentation that each of two distinct types of drugs being developed by the Company has activity against cell lines of breast, colon, lung, prostate, pancreas, ovary, stomach and liver cancer, as well as against the major types of leukemias. LB-100 has now been shown to have activity in animal models of brain tumors of adults and children, and also against melanomas and sarcomas. Studies in animal models of human melanoma, lymphoma, sarcoma, brain tumors, and the rare neuroendocrine cancer, pheochromocytoma, have demonstrated marked potentiation by LB-100 of the anti-tumor activity of the widely used standard chemotherapeutic drugs. These studies confirm that the LB-100 compounds, combined with any of several standard anti-cancer drugs, have broad activity affecting many different cell types of cancer. This is unusual and important because these compounds may be useful for treatment of cancer in general.

The research on brain tumors was conducted in collaboration with the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke ("NINDS") of the National Institutes of Health ("NIH") under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement ("CRADA") entered into on March 22, 2006. The CRADA was extended through a series of amendments and remained in effect until April 1, 2013. The research at NINDS was led by Dr. Zhengping Zhuang, an internationally recognized investigator in the molecular pathology of cancer. Dr. Zhuang was aided by two senior research technicians supported by the Company as part of the CRADA. The goal of the CRADA was to develop more effective drugs for the treatment of GBM through the processes required to gain allowance from the FDA for clinical trials. The CRADA terminated as scheduled on April 1, 2013.

During 2009, the Company signed material transfer agreements with academic investigators at major cancer centers in the United States, as well as with one investigator in China with a unique animal model of a sarcoma, to expand molecular and applied studies of the anti-cancer activity of the Company's compounds. The Company retained the right to all discoveries made in these studies.

The Company's immediate focus is to determine the safety and appropriate dose of LB-100 when used alone and when used in combination with a widely used anti-cancer drug in its Phase 1 clinical trial. The Company believes the potent activity of these drugs, in combination with standard non-specific chemotherapeutic drugs against a diverse array of common and uncommon cancers of adults and children, merits bringing this treatment to patients as rapidly as possible. If favorable treatment responses are also noted in the Phase 1 clinical trial, the Company would expect there to be increased interest by potential investors and by large pharmaceutical companies looking to add an entirely new approach to their anti-cancer drug portfolios. However, clinical benefit often is not apparent until a new compound advances to a Phase 2 clinical trial, which, if warranted, is anticipated to follow the Phase 1 clinical trial.

The Company's longer-term objective is to secure one or more strategic partnerships with pharmaceutical companies with major programs in cancer, anti-fungal treatments, and/or neuroprotective measures.

The significant diversity of the potential therapeutic value of the Company's series 2 compounds (LB-201 and homologs) stems from the fact that these agents modify critical pathways in cancer cells and in microorganisms such as fungi and appear to ameliorate pathologic processes that lead to brain injury caused by trauma or toxins or through as yet unknown mechanisms that underlie the major chronic neurologic diseases, including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease).

Operating Plans

The Company's primary focus is developing new treatments for human cancers for which better therapies are urgently needed. However, the scope of potential applications of the Company's products has expanded to other common non-malignant diseases, including vascular diseases (heart attacks and stroke, diabetes, and genetic diseases, such as Gaucher's disease) in which errors in normal cellular processing lead to loss of functions important to normal cell function. This has occurred because the targets selected by the Company have multiple functions in the cell, which when altered result in different disorders that may benefit by treatment from the Company's products.

The Company's drug discovery process is based on discerning clues to potential new targets for disease treatments reported in the increasingly large body of literature identifying the molecular variants, which characterize human cancers and other non-cancer disorders. In the past decade, there has been an unprecedented expansion in knowledge of biochemical defects in the cancer cell. The Company designs drugs for which there are existing data suggesting that they may affect the altered pathways of the cancer cell and may be given safely to humans. The Company seeks to rapidly arrive at patentable structures through analysis of the literature rather than screening of thousands of structures for activity against a particular biochemical pathway.

This approach has led to the development of two classes of drugs for the treatment of cancer, protein phosphatase inhibitors (PTase-i), designated by the Company as the LB-100 series of compounds, and histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACi), designated by the Company as the LB-200 series of compounds. Compounds of both types also have potential use in the prevention and treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. The LB-100 series consists of novel structures, which have the potential to be first in their class, and may be useful in the treatment of not only several types of cancer but also vascular and metabolic diseases. The LB-200 series contains compounds which have the potential to be the most effective in its class and may be useful for the treatment of chronic hereditary diseases, such as Gaucher's disease, in addition to cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. .

On August 16, 2011, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (the "PTO") awarded a patent to the Company for its lead compound, LB-100, as well as for a number of structurally related compounds. On November 15, 2011, the PTO awarded a patent to the Company for a lead compound in the LB-200 series and a compound in the LB-100 series as neuroprotective agents for the prevention and treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. On March 27, 2012, the PTO awarded a patent to the Company for its lead compound, LB-201, as well as for a number of structurally related compounds. Patent applications on these compounds and their use are pending world-wide.

The Company has demonstrated that lead compounds of both series of drugs are active against a broad spectrum of human cancers in cell culture and against several types of human cancers in animal models. The research on new drug treatment was initiated in 2006 with the National Institute of Neurologic Disorders and Stroke ("NINDS"), National Institutes of Health ("NIH") under a continuing Cooperative Research and Development Agreement ("CRADA") effective March 22, 2006. The research at NINDS was led by Dr. Zhengping Zhuang, an internationally recognized investigator in the molecular pathology of cancer. The initial focus of the CRADA was on the most common and uniformly fatal brain tumor of adults, glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). The work at NIH was then extended to the most common brain tumor of children, medulloblastoma, and to the most common extracranial solid tumor of children, neuroblastoma. The CRADA was extended through a series of amendments and remained in effect until April 1, 2013, when it terminated as scheduled.

Effective treatment of brain tumors depends upon the ability of compounds to penetrate a physiological barrier known as the "blood-brain barrier", which . . .

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