Cyrano Therapeutics has developed a nasal spray to treat and restore the sense of smell and flavor in those who have experienced a chronic loss of those senses.
The Company was founded by an experienced healthcare executive after personally experiencing a chronic loss of smell and flavor. The nasal spray has restored his smell and flavor function and he is now leading a mission to bring it to others.
The nasal spray developed by Cyrano has been successfully tested in a 94-patient pilot study with 3 out of 4 patients responding to treatment in an all-comer population. Patients have now been followed out to one year and no significant side effects have been reported. Currently no marketed drug therapy exists for this indication and the company is not aware of any in the pipeline aside from the Cyrano product. An IP portfolio has been established and key patents have been issued.
The Company is seeking up to $7M to fund a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial to initiate a 505(b)(2) pathway to approval in the USA and advance approval pathways in other major geographies.
The chronic loss of smell and flavor is a condition affecting at least 15 million people in the US alone with a similar incidence in Europe, having a significant impact on quality of life and well-being. Influenza, allergic rhinitis and traumatic brain injury are commonly known causes of chronic smell and flavor loss. In the neurodegenerative disease sector, it is also known that 95% of Parkinson’s patients experience smell and flavor loss, often the first symptom of the disease. Finally, we have recently learned that at least 1 in 2 people who contract COVID-19 will lose their sense of smell/flavor. Although some will recover, it is certain that many will have a long-term deficit in need of treatment.
The most significant differentiator is that Cyrano has developed the very first pharmaceutical therapy to treat the long-term loss of smell and flavor. Currently no marketed drug therapy exists for this indication and the company is not aware of any in the pipeline aside from the Cyrano product. A broad IP portfolio has been established and key patents have been issued.
An additional differentiator is the fact that this therapy can be self-administered via a simple nasal spray.
The Cyrano Therapeutics nasal spray has been successfully tested in a 94-patient pilot study in patients with smell loss primarily due to a flu virus or allergic rhinitis. In the study, 65% of patients responded to treatment after 2-4 months, 69% responded after 5-8 months and 80% responded after 9-12 months duration of therapy. Patients on average were able to detect and recognize odorants that were less than 1/100th the concentration that they could detect and recognize at baseline. With respect to safety, patients were followed out to one year and no significant side effects were reported.
Cyrano Therapeutics has completed a meeting with the FDA and confirmed that the company will use an 505(b)(2) regulatory pathway, a more expeditious path to approval than a traditional NDA regulatory pathway. The next step will be to fund the preparation and execution of a 92 patient placebo-controlled randomized trial, the results of which will be used to attract a large pharma partner.
Deep and Experienced Team
Rick Geoffrion is the Co-Founder, President and CEO with more than 30 years of experience as a healthcare executive and entrepreneur. He is a founder of multiple venture-backed private healthcare companies, has raised tens of millions in venture capital and achieved significant exits for a number of them. Rick was a smell and flavor impaired patient who has been successfully treated with the Cyrano therapy. His full profile can be found at: www.linkedin.com/in/rick-geoffrion-64b11b2
Dr. Robert Henkin is the Co-Founder, Chief Scientific Officer as well as the Director of the Taste and Smell Clinic, Washington, DC; past Head Neuroendocrinology Section, NHLI< NIH; past Director of the Center for Molecular Nutrition and Sensory Disorders; past Professor of Medicine for Pediatrics, Neurology, Georgetown University.
Dr. Charles Laudadio is the Chief Medical Officer, a pharmaceutical physician with nearly 40 years’ experience in clinical research and global medical affairs; former Global Medical Director at CSL Behring.
John Carlos Diaz is the Director of Clinical Operations, a clinical research leader with more than 20 years of combined pre-clinical and clinical operations experience; former head of clinical operations at Braeburn Pharmaceuticals.
Syd Gilman is the Sr. Advisor, Regulatory Affairs; former FDA reviewer (6 years) wit over 30 years of experience in pharmaceuticals and over 10 years of regulatory drug development experience in working with Central Nervous System compounds.
Michael Cheney is the Sr. Advisor, Marketing; 30 years of experience in pharmaceutical, medical device and biotech. Ten years of experience in neuropsychopharmacology. Launched a $3B brand for AHP/Wyeth-Ayerst.
Cyrano is currently seeking to raise a $7M Series A to fund a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial to initiate an expedited pathway to approval in the USA. Cyrano has already secured a lead investor, a reputable biopharma VC who has fully vetted the Company, the IP and the clinical/regulatory program. They will commit $4M towards the $7M series A. As a result, they are now speaking with parties who would be interested to contribute follow-on capital to close out the round in the near future.