Advanced Targeting Systems continues to search for funding to develop Substance P-Saporin (SP-SAP) as a chronic pain therapeutic. In May of last year we decided to seek venture capital funding and began traveling to make presentations to potential investors.
The response from most everyone we spoke to was positive and they thought the potential of SP-SAP was tremendous. However, the economy and prior portfolio commitments kept them from investing.
So, where does that leave SP-SAP now? Over the next couple of months we will be completing dose- ranging and preliminary safety studies in a second animal. The FDA will require two GLP toxicology studies—one in rat and one in dog—prior to granting approval to begin clinical trials in humans. Costs to take SP-SAP to that point are in the $2.5 million range.
Up to this point, all of the SP-SAP development costs have been covered by grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and ATS research and development funds. We recently applied for a drug development grant from the NIH, National Institute of Mental Health, that may provide substantial support, if approved. We will hear about the probability of this funding in May or June of this year.
In the meantime, we continue to talk to potential investors and corporate partners to search for a quicker way to bring SP-SAP to the many people suffering from chronic pain. It’s an important effort that receives a lot of our time and attention.