SkinBioTherapeutics PLC (LON:SBTX) has made “significant progress” so far this year with the development of its moisturising cream, according to the life sciences group's chief executive, Cath O'Neill.
SkinBio kicked off the first-in-human studies of the technology last month, with researchers assessing skin irritancy, moisturisation potential and skin barrier function of different concentrations of the cream.
The skin barrier study is the most ambitious of the three. It will attempt to ascertain whether the positive impact of the technology on the skin's barrier function seen in the lab is replicated in 120 female volunteers with dry skin.
Results from the first two trials – irritancy and moisturisation – are due in the coming weeks, although data from the skin barrier study won’t be ready until the first quarter of 2019.
Even though the technology is still in the development stage, SkinBio has already signed a material transfer agreement (MTA) with a global consumer goods company, while a “range” of other firms have taken a keen interest in the cream.
That is important, given that the long-term plan is to license out the technology to other companies for them to use in their lotions and potions.
Studies a ‘major milestone’
“This year, our focus has been on preparing the SkinBiotix technology for its first human study and longer-term preparations for commercialisation. On both fronts, we have made good progress,” said CEO O’Neill.
“Firstly, we have demonstrated that our lysate can be freeze-dried and scaled-up to industrial levels.
“On the commercial front, we have an ongoing dialogue, including an MTA, with a range of major fast-moving consumer goods and cosmetic companies who are taking a close interest in our technology and progress.”
She added: “Post year end, we initiated the cosmetic human studies which were a major milestone for the Company. On the basis that the results are positive, the validation will strengthen our position as a science-led business and enable further commercial discussions.”
Cash in the bank
SkinBio made a loss before tax of £941,000 in the 12 months ended June 30, finishing the year with £3.2mln of cash in the bank (2017: £3.9mln).
Shares rose 2% to 19.1p in early deals on Thursday.