Acasti Pharma Inc (NASDAQ:ACST) (CVE:ACST) told investors on Monday that it has further strengthened its intellectual property (IP) portfolio as it moves towards a potential launch of its drug CaPre, sending shares higher.
The company is developing CaPre, a krill-oil derived prescription drug, to treat hypertriglyceridemia - high levels of triglycerides in the blood - which is known to contribute to heart disease.
READ: Acasti Pharma shares nudge higher as it files meeting request with the US Food and Drug Administration
In a statement, the biotech firm said it has now been granted a second composition matter patent from the Canadian Intellectual Property office.
This new patent expands its existing claims to include any composition containing eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) found in certain fish oils and DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid ), an omega-3 fatty acid where at least 50% of the composition consists of phospholipids, it said.
"This notice of Allowance for a composition of matter patent builds upon similar patents previously awarded in the United States and Mexico, expanding the scope of our composition claims," said Pierre Lemieux, Acasti's chief operating officer and chief scientific officer.
"Strengthening our IP portfolio is central to our business strategy as we move forward with commercial launch planning, assuming we are successful in gaining regulatory approval for CaPre.”
Meeting request filed
As reported on April 1, Acasti has now filed a meeting request with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and expects this to take place in the second half of June.
The firm has carried out two Phase III trials on the drug - TRILOGY 1 and TRILOGY 2 - and identified some "unexpected and inconsistent findings" in the TRILOGY 1 trial that it believes may have negatively contributed to the overall topline results. Following that, Acasti announced an audit and analysis of the study data.
"The meeting is intended to discuss TRILOGY 1 data, and gain alignment with the FDA on the interpretation of the results," Acasti said at the beginning of this month.
Acasti shares in Toronto added 6.74% to C$0.95 on Monday morning.
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