9 Meters Biopharma Inc. (NASDAQ: NMTR) has announced the signing of a secured convertible notes facility of $70 million with a single lender as part of the company’s overall financing strategy supporting vurolenatide development for short bowel syndrome via a New Drug Application.
Funds to support vurolenatide development
After the acquisition closes, 9 Meters will be entitled to an initial cash drawdown of $20 million. If certain conditions are met, including obtaining more capital, the firm has the option to borrow up to an extra $50 million in $5 to $20 million installments over 18 months. The notes will carry interest at a variable rate set to a floor of roughly 6% and have an interest-only for 12 months.
At the end of March, the company has cash and cash equivalents of $37 million. Considering the $20 million initial drawdowns at closing, 9 Meters Biopharma would have around $57 million in cash and investments and a cash runway that will take it to the fourth quarter of 2023.
9 Meters releases initial VIBRANT study results
Also, the company has released encouraging preliminary topline findings from the VIBRANT trial (VurolenatIde for short Bowel syndrome Regardless of pArenteral support RequiremeNt). This is a second phase study of the company’s novel, long-acting GLP-1 receptor agonist, vurolenatide, currently developing for the treatment of short bowel syndrome in adult patients. Interestingly an end of phase two meeting is scheduled in mid-Q3 with the FDA to discuss an NDA based on these Phase 2 trial findings and other supportive data.
Vurolenatide demonstrated a favorable profile and was well tolerated with mild-moderate transient side effects, including nausea and vomiting, that are common or GLP-1 agonists. No unfavorable incidents caused an early trial withdrawal. Two severe adverse events—central catheter infection, which is prevalent in patients with a central line—were recorded; both were unrelated to the study medicine. The trial’s overall findings add to and corroborate those from 9 Meters’ earlier Phase 1b/2a trial of vurolenatide in SBS.