GTx Rebounds in Third Quarter

MICHAEL WADDELL | Special to The Daily News

Memphis-based biopharmaceutical company GTx Inc. on Thursday, Nov. 8, reported net income of $7.4 million for the third quarter, fueled primarily from $18.8 million in net proceeds from the sale in early October of Fareston, a breast treatment medication.

The company’s net income compares to a net loss of $9.3 million for the same period last year.

For the first nine months of this year, GTx reported a net loss of $14.1 million compared to a net loss of $22.6 million for the same period of 2011. Research and development expenses for Q3 were $9.8 million compared to $8.2 million for the same period in 2011.

“The proceeds from the sale enhanced our balance sheet and give us comfort that we should have sufficient cash available to us to see data from both our enobasarm and capesaris clinical studies,” said Dr. Mitchell Steiner, GTx chief executive officer. “Let me point out that we reported $47.3 million at hand in the quarter, and following the sale with Fareston we had approximately $66 million in cash and short-term investments.”

On Oct. 1 GTx sold the rights and certain assets of Fareston 60mg tablets to New Jersey-based ProStrakan Group for a total cash consideration of $21.7 million. Fareston is an approved treatment of metastatic breast cancer in postmenopausal women in the U.S.

The company is currently developing two new medications used in treatments involving lung and prostate cancer.

“GTx has made good progress in advancing our two late stage clinical programs: enobasarm for the prevention and treatment of muscle wasting in patients who have advanced small-cell lung cancer and capesaris, a secondary hormonal treatment for men with castration-resistant prostate cancer,” Steiner said.

The company is on schedule with enrolling subjects for its Stage III clinical trials of enobasarm at more than 80 sites in the U.S., Europe and South America. Each trial will include 300 patients with either Stage III or Stage IV small-cell lung cancer.

Steiner pointed out that GTx has not yet partnered with a pharmaceutical company for Osterine, the brand name of enobasarm that GTx is developing.

“Several large global pharmaceutical companies have been in discussions with GTx,” said Steiner, who explained GTx will wait to gather data from the Stage III trials before making any decisions. “When we have the data then it’s going to give GTx a lot more options with the global pharmaceutical partners that we’re in discussions with now, and, quite frankly, it will help us understand what we want to do as a company from a commercial standpoint.”

GTx has also initiated Phase II trials for its prostate cancer treatment medication Capesaris. Lower doses of the drug will be evaluated after larger doses were found to cause blood clots in some patients.