Neurocentrx, an Edinburgh-based pharmaceutical company, has appointed Nigel Brooksby as Non-Executive Chairman and Dr. Tim Corn as Non-Executive Director to take the company to a global market.
Neurocentrx is developing new clinical indications, and new forms of administration for oral ketamine. This innovative vision, to repurpose an approved human drug most commonly used as an anaesthetic, has the potential to improve pain management, and significantly impact how psychiatric conditions such as severe depression are treated.
Currently, oral liquid ketamine formulations are useful to a minority of patients but it is difficult to control dose and effects are variable, whereas the use of intravenously administered ketamine is limited to a hospital setting.
New oral capsule formulations being developed by Neurocentrx will allow a broader range of patients to benefit through easier administration and more controlled pharmacokinetics outside of the hospital environment.
Life Sciences entrepreneur Nigel Brooksby brings significant experience in business and growth strategy across the healthcare sector. He has held senior global executive positions at Pfizer, Sanofi and Wellcome (now GSK). Brooksby has also worked extensively in private equity and venture capital, and is a past President of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Association (ABPI). Over the course of the last five years he has worked with companies that have listed on both NASDAQ and AIM.
Brooksby explains: “Neurocentrx is working towards something very exciting, and this is a rare opportunity to deliver new solutions for a number of treatments that will benefit countless patients.
“My focus is to accelerate the business model and drive commercial clinical trials, to raise international awareness of what we are offering, and enter the global market. I look forward to working the team, and helping to drive the company to an exciting new stage in their development.”
Dr. Tim Corn, formally Chief Medical Officer at EUSA Pharma International, (acquired by Jazz Pharma Inc., for $700M, 2012) and Zeneus Pharma Ltd., (acquired by Cephalon for $360M, 2005), has played a key role in over 20 regulatory approvals in USA and Europe. He brings valuable experience of driving clinical trials to fruition, and will help Neurocentrx bring their innovation to the next level.
Corn comments: “There has been very little innovation in psychiatric drug development in recent years. Current treatments can be very effective, but are not right for everyone. The idea that ketamine could safely help address these problems is very exciting”.
“Additionally, there is significant evidence showing that ketamine can help treat a number of different types and presentations of pain, including patients contending with cancer related pain and in palliative care, who may no longer respond as well to standard methods of pain management.”
Neurocentrx was formed in 2013. Carmel Reilly, CEO, spotted the potential of ketamine during her time working with colleagues at the University of Edinburgh, and founded Neurocentrx to develop a number of drug formats and clinical indications. The company has received ongoing support from Equity Gap Ltd., Scottish Enterprise, and Carbon Life Ltd., to develop their commercial product.
Carmel Reilly, CEO of Neurocentrx: “I am honoured to welcome the extraordinary experience and talents of Nigel Brooksby and Tim Corn onto the Board. This is an important milestone for Neurocentrx and marks the start of an exciting new phase of our growth. It is an absolute privilege to work with two such well respected people, who share our vision for the future.”
Neurocentrx is developing medicines for specialist neuro-related conditions with a focus on developing clinical stage assets in psychiatric, mental health and mood disorders, neurodegenerative diseases and pain management – including rare orphan indications and palliative and supportive care.