NATURE OF BUSINESS
|3 Months Ended|
Jul. 31, 2022
|Organization, Consolidation and Presentation of Financial Statements [Abstract]|
|NATURE OF BUSINESS||
NOTE 1 – NATURE OF BUSINESS
PharmaCyte Biotech, Inc. (“Company”) is a biotechnology company focused on developing cellular therapies for cancer, diabetes and malignant ascites based upon a proprietary cellulose-based live cell encapsulation technology known as “Cell-in-a-Box®.” The Cell-in-a-Box® technology is intended to be used as a platform upon which therapies for several types of cancer, including locally advanced, inoperable pancreatic cancer (“LAPC”) will be developed. The current generation of the Company’s product candidate is referred to as “CypCaps™.”
The Company is a Nevada corporation incorporated in 1996. In 2013, the Company restructured its operations to focus on biotechnology. The Company acquired licenses from SG Austria to treat cancer and Austrianova Singapore to treat diabetes using the Cell-in-the-Box technology. The restructuring resulted in the Company focusing all its efforts upon the development of a novel, effective and safe way to treat cancer and diabetes. In January 2015, the Company changed its name from Nuvilex, Inc. to PharmaCyte Biotech, Inc. to reflect the nature of its current business. In October 2021, the Company moved its headquarters from Laguna Hills, California to Las Vegas, Nevada.
On September 1, 2020, the Company submitted an Investigational New Drug Application (“IND”) to the United States Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) for a planned clinical trial in LAPC. On October 1, 2020, the Company received notice from the FDA that it had placed the IND on clinical hold. On October 30, 2020, the FDA sent a letter to the Company setting forth the reasons for the clinical hold and specific guidance on what the Company must do to have the clinical hold lifted.
To lift the clinical hold, the FDA has informed the Company that it needs to conduct several additional preclinical studies. The FDA also requested additional information regarding several topics, including DNA sequencing data, manufacturing information and product release specifications. The Company has been in the process of conducting these studies and gathering additional information to submit to the FDA. See “Investigational New Drug Application and Clinical Hold” below.
On August 15, 2022, the Company entered into a Cooperation Agreement (“Cooperation Agreement”) with Iroquois Master Fund Ltd. and its affiliates pursuant to which the Company elected a reconstituted Board of Directors. See Note 13 – Subsequent Events to the Notes to Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements. The Board has formed a Business Review Committee to evaluate, investigate and review the Company’s business, affairs, strategy, management and operations and in its sole discretion to make recommendations to the Company’s management and Board with respect thereto. The Business Review Committee is also reviewing many of the risks relative to the Company’s business. In addition, the Board is reviewing the Company’s development programs and its relationship with SG Austria, including that all licensed patents have expired, that know-how relating to the Company’s Cell-in-a-Box® technology solely resides with SG Austria, and that the incentives of SG Austria and its management may not be currently aligned with those of the Company. The Board has curtailed spending on the Company’s programs, including pre-clinical and clinical activities, until the review by the Business Review Committee and the Board is complete and the Board has determined the actions and plans to be implemented. The Business Review Committee’s recommendations will include potentially seeking a new framework for the Company’s relationship with SG Austria and its subsidiaries. In the event the Company is unsuccessful in seeking an acceptable new framework, the Company will reevaluate whether it should continue those programs which are dependent on SG Austria, including its development programs for LAPC, diabetes and malignant ascites. The issues involving SG Austria have delayed the Company’s timeline for addressing the FDA clinical hold for its planned clinical trial in LAPC and could result in other delays or termination of the development activities. In addition, the curtailment of spending on the Company’s programs pending the review by the Business Review Committee and the Board may cause additional delays.
The Cell-in-a-Box® encapsulation technology potentially enables genetically engineered live human cells to be used as a means to produce various biologically active molecules. The technology is intended to result in the formation of pinhead sized cellulose-based porous capsules in which genetically modified live human cells can be encapsulated and maintained. In a laboratory setting, this proprietary live cell encapsulation technology has been shown to create a micro-environment in which encapsulated cells survive and flourish. They are protected from environmental challenges, such as the sheer forces associated with bioreactors and passage through catheters and needles, which the Company believes that this enables greater cell growth and production of the active molecules. The capsules are largely composed of cellulose (cotton) and are bioinert.
The Company has been developing therapies for pancreatic and other solid cancerous tumors by using genetically engineered live human cells that it believes are capable of converting a cancer prodrug into its cancer-killing form. The Company encapsulates those cells using the Cell-in-a-Box® technology and places those capsules in the body as close as possible to the tumor. In this way, the Company believes that when a cancer prodrug is administered to a patient with a particular type of cancer that may be affected by the prodrug the killing of the patient’s cancerous tumor may be optimized.
The Company has also been developing a way to delay the production and accumulation of malignant ascites that results from many types of abdominal cancerous tumors. The Company’s therapy for malignant ascites involves using the same encapsulated cells it employs for pancreatic cancer but placing the encapsulated cells in the peritoneal cavity of a patient and administering ifosfamide intravenously.
In addition to the two cancer programs discussed above, the Company has been working on ways to exploit the benefits of the Cell-in-a-Box® technology to develop therapies for cancer that involve prodrugs based upon certain constituents of the Cannabis plant. However, until the FDA allows us to commence our clinical trial in LAPC and we are able to validate our Cell-in-a-Box® encapsulation technology in a clinical trial, we are not spending any further resources developing our Cannabis Program.
Finally, the Company has been developing a potential therapy for Type 1 diabetes and insulin-dependent Type 2 diabetes. The Company’s product candidate for the treatment of diabetes consists of encapsulated genetically modified insulin-producing cells. The encapsulation will be done using the Cell-in-a-Box® technology. Implanting these encapsulated cells in the body is designed to have them function as a bio-artificial pancreas for purposes of insulin production.
Until the review by the Business Review Committee and the Board is complete and the Board has determined the actions and plans to be implemented, spending on the Company’s programs has been curtailed.
Investigational New Drug Application and Clinical Hold
On September 1, 2020, the Company submitted an IND to the FDA for a planned clinical trial in LAPC. On October 1, 2020, the Company received notice from the FDA that it had placed the Company’s IND on clinical hold. On October 30, 2020, the FDA sent the Company a letter setting forth the reasons for the clinical hold and providing specific guidance on what the Company must do to have the clinical hold lifted.
In order to address the clinical hold, the FDA requested that the Company:
The FDA also requested that the Company address the following issues as an amendment to the Company’s IND:
The Company assembled a scientific and regulatory team of experts to address the FDA requests. That team has been working diligently to complete the items requested by the FDA. The Company is in the latter stages of conducting the studies and providing the information requested by the FDA. The Company has completed the pilot study of two pigs and is evaluating the preliminary data before commencing the larger study of 90 pigs.
Impact of COVID-19 on the Company’s Financial Condition and Results of Operations
The coronavirus SARS Cov2 pandemic (“COVID-19”) continues to cause uncertainty and significant, industry-wide delays in clinical trials. The availability of vaccines holds promise for the future; however, new variants of the virus and potential waning immunity from vaccines may result in continued impact from COVID-19 in the future, which could adversely impact our operations. Although the Company is not yet in a clinical trial, the Company has filed an IND with the FDA to commence a clinical trial in LAPC. While the IND has been placed on clinical hold by the FDA, the Company has assessed the impact of COVID-19 on its operations.
Many clinical trials have been delayed due to COVID-19. There are numerous reasons for these delays. For example, patients have shown a reluctance to enroll or continue in a clinical trial due to fear of exposure to COVID-19 when they are in a hospital or doctor’s office. There are local, regional and state-wide orders and regulations restricting usual normal activity by people. These discourage and interfere with patient visits to a doctor’s office if the visit is not COVID-19 related. Healthcare providers and health systems have shifted their resources away from clinical trials toward the care of COVID-19 patients. The FDA and other healthcare providers are making product candidates for the treatment of COVID-19 a priority over product candidates unrelated to COVID-19.
As a result of COVID-19 and the mitigation efforts to address it, the Company may experience additional disruptions that could adversely impact its business and clinical trial, if allowed to proceed, including: (i) delays or difficulties in enrolling patients in the Company’s clinical trial if the FDA allows the Company to go forward with the trial; (ii) delays or difficulties in clinical site activation, including difficulties in recruiting clinical site investigators and clinical site personnel; (iii) delays in clinical sites receiving the supplies and materials needed to conduct the clinical trial, including interruption in global shipping that may affect the transport of the Company’s clinical trial product; (iv) changes in local regulations as part of a response to COVID-19 which may require the Company to change the ways in which its clinical trial is to be conducted, which may result in unexpected costs, or to discontinue the clinical trial altogether; (v) diversion of healthcare resources away from the conduct of clinical trials, including the diversion of hospitals serving as the Company’s clinical trial sites and hospital staff supporting the conduct of the Company’s clinical trial; (vi) interruption of key clinical trial activities, such as clinical trial site monitoring, due to limitations on travel imposed or recommended by federal or state governments, employers and others, or interruption of clinical trial subject visits and study procedures, the occurrence of which could affect the integrity of clinical trial data; (vii) risk that participants enrolled in our clinical trials will acquire COVID-19 while the clinical trial is ongoing, which could impact the results of the clinical trial, including by increasing the number of observed adverse events; (viii) delays in necessary interactions with local regulators, ethics committees, and other important agencies and contractors due to limitations in employee resources or forced furlough of government employees; (ix) limitations in employee resources that would otherwise be focused on the conduct of the Company’s clinical trial because of sickness of employees or their families or the desire of employees to avoid contact with large groups of people; (x) refusal of the FDA to accept data from clinical trials in affected geographies; and (xi) interruption or delays to the Company’s clinical trial activities.
As a result of COVID-19, commencement of the Company’s clinical trial to treat LAPC may be delayed beyond the lifting of the clinical hold by the FDA should that occur. Also, enrollment may be difficult for the reasons discussed above. In addition, after enrollment in the trial, if patients contract COVID-19 during their participation in the trial or are subject to isolation or shelter in place restrictions, this may cause them to drop out of our clinical trial, miss scheduled therapy appointments or follow-up visits or otherwise fail to follow the clinical trial protocol. If patients are unable to follow the clinical trial protocol or if the trial results are otherwise affected by the consequences of COVID-19 on patient participation or actions taken to mitigate COVID-19 spread, the integrity of data from the clinical trial may be compromised or not be accepted by the FDA. This could further adversely impact or delay the Company’s clinical development program if the FDA allows it to proceed.
Clinical trials in the biopharma industry may be delayed due to COVID-19. There are numerous reasons for these potential delays. The impact relates to delays in: (i) completing studies required by the FDA; (ii) manufacturing a new batch of CypCap™ for the Company’s planned clinical trial in LAPC; (iii) manufacturing syringes of CypCaps™ for some of the Company’s preclinical studies to be completed and for use in the Company’s Malignant Ascites Program; and (iv) securing third party contractors to conduct various R&D projects for the Company. As a result, there may be delays in generating responses to the requests from the FDA related to the clinical hold. Many of these potential delays are also due to the impact of COVID-19 in foreign countries where the Company is conducting these preclinical studies, including India, Europe, Singapore and Thailand. There have also been supply chain interruptions due to COVID-19.
It is highly speculative in projecting the effects of COVID-19 on the Company’s proposed clinical development program and the Company generally. Moreover, the various precautionary measures taken by many governmental authorities around the world in order to limit the spread of COVID-19 has had and may continue to have an adverse effect on the global markets and global economy, including on the availability and pricing of employees, resources, materials, manufacturing and delivery efforts and other aspects of the global economy. The continuation of COVID-19 could materially disrupt the Company’s business and operations, hamper its ability to raise additional funds or sell securities, continue to slow down the overall economy, curtail consumer spending, interrupt the Company’s sources of supply, and make it hard to adequately staff the Company’s operations. The effects of COVID-19 quickly and dramatically change over time. Its evolution is difficult to predict, and no one is able to say with certainty when the pandemic will fully cease to have an impact on the Company’s operations.
The Company’s common stock began trading on Nasdaq on August 10, 2021, under the symbol “PMCB.” Prior to that, the Company’s common stock was quoted on the OTCQB Market under the symbol “PMCB.”
Reverse Stock Split
Effective July 12, 2021, the Company filed a Certificate of Change with the Nevada Secretary of State that authorized a 1:1500 reverse stock split of the Company’s common stock. The reverse stock split resulted in reducing the authorized number of shares of the Company’s common stock from 50 billion to thirty-three million three hundred thirty-three thousand three hundred thirty-four with a par value of $0.0001 per share. Any fractional shares resulting from the reverse stock split were rounded up to the next whole share. All warrants, option, share and per share information in this Report gives retroactive effect to such 1:1500 reverse stock split.
The entire disclosure for organization, consolidation and basis of presentation of financial statements disclosure.
Reference 1: http://fasb.org/us-gaap/role/ref/legacyRef