TORONTO, Ontario and CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts - March 31, 2021 - ProMIS Neurosciences, Inc. (TSX: PMN) (OTCQB: ARFXF) ('ProMIS or the Company'), a biotechnology company focused on the discovery and development of antibody therapeutics targeting toxic oligomers implicated in the development of neurodegenerative diseases, today announced its operational and financial results for the year ended December 31, 2020.
'Despite the many challenges resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and over the course of the past year, the value of our unique discovery and development platform was further evidenced as ProMIS made considerable progress in expanding its portfolio of opportunities across multiple neurodegenerative diseases', stated Eugene Williams, ProMIS' Executive Chairman.
During 2020, we received proceeds from the exercise of warrants in the amount of $2,197,245. In March 2021, the Company completed a US$7.0 million (CDN$8.75 million) private placement of debentures. The debentures are convertible into common shares at the option of the holder at a conversion price of US$0.10 per share and accrue interest at 1% per annum, which is payable annually.
In May 2020, ProMIS announced it had identified novel antagonists against the receptor for activated protein kinase C1 (RACK1) that prevent the formation of dysfunctional protein aggregates and act to restore normal function. Evidence indicates that targeting RACK1 is a promising new strategy to address the complex mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
In July 2020, the Company entered into two joint venture business arrangements (JV) with BC Neuroimmunology Lab, Inc. (BCNI). The first JV (JV1) will develop and market highly accurate, objective tests for the detection, diagnosis and monitoring of Alzheimer's disease (AD). JV1 will offer existing blood-based assays for NfL (neurofilament light chain) and P-tau181 (phosphorylated tau181). Further assays will be developed, potentially incorporating our proprietary peptide antigens and tests for additional neurodegenerative diseases. The second JV (JV2) is a collaboration to develop a high-throughput, highly specific serological assay to accurately detect the presence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. The Company and BCNI each own 50% of JV1 and JV2.
In July 2020, the Company announced the voting results of the Corporation's annual meeting of shareholders held in Vancouver, BC. All of the resolutions announced in the Management Proxy Circular and placed before the Meeting were approved by the shareholders. All Directors were elected, with each nominee receiving more than 75% of the votes cast.
In September 2020, ProMIS announced initiation of a program to construct and test a multivalent peptide vaccine for AD. The critical first steps in vaccine development will be carried out at the University of Saskatchewan's Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization-International Vaccine Centre (VIDO-InterVac), a global leader in vaccine research and development.
In November 2020, the Company closed on a special warrant financing. The Company issued 16,219,581 special warrant certificates for gross proceeds of $1,946,350 ($1,636,590 net of issuance costs). Each special warrant will be exercisable, without payment of any additional consideration by the holder, into one common share and one transferrable common share purchase warrant (Warrant).
In March 2021, the special warrant financing converted into 16,219,581 common shares and 16,219,581 warrants. Each warrant entitles the holder to acquire one common share at an exercise price at $0.20 per warrant share for 60 months until November 2025.
In October 2020, Dr. David Wishart, Distinguished University Professor in the Departments of Biological Sciences and Computing Science at the University of Alberta, was appointed to the Company's Scientific Advisory Board.
Annual Results of Operations
The Company's net loss for the year ended December 31, 2020 was $5,662,392 compared to a net loss of $7,396,259 year ended December 31, 2019. Included in the net loss amount for the year ended December 31, 2020 were non-cash expenses of $430,242 representing share-based compensation, warrant modification and valuation and amortization of an intangible asset, compared to $655,954 for the year ended December 31, 2019. The decrease in the net loss for the year ended December 31, 2020 reflects decreased costs associated with external contract research organizations for internal programs, patent costs, share-based compensation, consultant salaries and associated costs and general corporate expenditures.
Research and development expenses for the year ended December 31, 2020 were $3,183,149, as compared to $4,735,317 in the year ended December 31, 2019. The decrease in research and development expense for the year ended December 31, 2020, compared to the same period ended December 31, 2019 reflects the conservation of existing cash resources and decreased spending on external contract research organizations for internal programs, reduced patent expense, share-based compensation, contracted research salaries and associated costs and external consulting expense.
General and administrative expenses for the year ended December 31, 2020 were $2,481,030, as compared to $2,662,144 in the year ended December 31, 2019. The decrease for the years ended December 31,2020, compared to the same period in 2019, is primarily attributable to a reduction in consulting and professional fees and a decrease in foreign exchange losses offset by warrant modification and valuation expense.
Following on from the completion of a US$7M (CDN$8.75M) financing in March 2021, we plan to advance progress toward our priority programs:
Advance the PMN310 monoclonal antibody, our potential 'best in class' next generation Alzheimer's treatment, into clinical testing;
Enhance our partnering prospects by allowing us to invest in additional validation data for key R&D programs;
Expand our portfolio of products and intellectual property into new target areas, using our proprietary discovery platform;
Advance our diagnostic programs in partnership with BCNI;
Achieve NASDAQ listing;
Expand our Board of Directors and our management team, to support a growing and ambitious scope of activity.
About ProMIS Neurosciences, Inc.
ProMIS Neurosciences, Inc. is a development stage biotechnology company focused on discovering and developing antibody therapeutics selectively targeting toxic oligomers implicated in the development and progression of neurodegenerative diseases, in particular Alzheimer's disease (AD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and Parkinson's disease (PD). The Company's proprietary target discovery platform is based on the use of two complementary thermodynamic, computational discovery engines -ProMIS and Collective Coordinates - to predict novel targets known as Disease Specific Epitopes on the molecular surface of misfolded proteins. Using this unique precision approach, the Company is developing novel antibody therapeutics for AD, ALS and PD. ProMIS is headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, with offices in Cambridge, Massachusetts. ProMIS is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol PMN, and on the OTCQB Venture Market under the symbol ARFXF.
Company documents relating to the fiscal year 2020 annual report can be viewed on the System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR) at the link below:
Visit us at www.promisneurosciences.comor follow us on Twitterand LinkedIn
For Investor Relations please contact:
Alpine Equity Advisors
Nicholas Rigopulos, President
Tel. 617 901-0785
The TSX has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. This information release contains certain forward-looking information. Such information involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from those implied by statements herein, and therefore these statements should not be read as guarantees of future performance or results. All forward-looking statements are based on the Company's current beliefs as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to it as well as other factors. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Due to risks and uncertainties, including the risks and uncertainties identified by the Company in its public securities filings, actual events may differ materially from current expectations. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.