Friday, February 28, 2014

More On Dr. Sable's "Likely Unique" Suitability For the SCYNEXIS Chief Science Role

More of the "inside baseball" story is emerging -- on Dr. Sable's move to Chief Science Officer at SCYNEXIS, via the blogging staff at FierceBiotech, this afternoon. It seems that she may have worked on the lead candidate, SCY-078, a treatment for Candida and Aspergillus pathogens when it was owned by Merck. After several Phase I studies, Merck out-licensed it to the company last year, apparently.

From the FierceBiotech piece then -- a bit -- do go read it all:

. . . .[SCYNEXIS], which spun out of a pre-Sanofi Aventis in 2000, believes its oral and intravenous SCY-078 can treat infections tied to the Candida and Aspergillus pathogens, which account for about 85% of invasive fungal ailments in the U.S. and Europe, according to Scynexis. Merck discovered the drug and ran 7 Phase I trials on it before licensing it out to Scynexis last year, the company said, and now the biotech plans to spend the majority of its raise getting an oral formulation into a Phase II study in Candida infections, expecting to kick off enrollment in the second half of this year.

Scynexis pegs the global market for drugs like SCY-078 at around $3.6 billion, and, thanks to the treatment's promise in drug-resistant strains and oral availability, the company believes it can carve out a sizable share of that space. . . .

I am certain that -- even if she never worked on what became SCY-078 while at MRL, her background makes her a great fit. But I now have a hunch that she did do some of the early work on SCY-078 (as she was working in the same research and development area from 1995 on, while at Merck), and thus may be able to deliver some real inside know-how -- given that Merck's out-license of it last year likely frees her from that part of whatever her non-compete might say. Fascinating. We will keep an eye on this.

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