iX Biopharma's stock rose as much as 9.8% to 28 cents post-lunch break following news that it is on the brink of obtaining a patent in a key market, the United States, for its technology for delivering drugs and other bioactives through wafers placed under the tongue.

The Singapore-listed company said it has been issued a "notice of allowance" for its WaferiX™ delivery technology by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

Such a notice is issued "if, on examination, it appears that the applicant is entitled to a patent under the law," according to the USPTO website.

 

The WaferiX technology yields small wafers prepared by iX Biopharma's proprietary freeze-drying process. The wafers act as simple drug carrier matrix with millions of tiny amorphous holes to house (encapsulate) the active drug molecules. The wafer is intended to be placed under the tongue, which subsequently dissolves within one minute, releasing the active compounds for rapid absorption into the blood stream. This administration allows faster delivery and a reduction in loss of drugs and actives due to hepatic and gastrointestinal metabolism, hence improving their bioavailability.



iX Biopharma said "the communications from the USPTO conclude substantive examination of the patent application, which is now expected to issue as a patent once the patent office concludes its administrative procedures." 

Stock price 

27.5 c

52-week range

13 – 34 c

Market cap

S$162 m

PE (ttm)

--

Dividend yield 

--

Year-to-date 
return

25%

Shares outstanding

645 m

Source: Bloomberg

The patent application is entitled “Fast Dissolving Solid Dosage Form” (U.S. Patent Application No. 13/504,309).

Upon issuance, the US patent is expected to expire no earlier than October 2030, said iX Biopharma.

While iX Biopharma doesn't have sales in the US currently, its WafermineTM, the world's first ketamine product (for pain management) delivered sublingually, is ready to start Phase 3 clinical trial following the US FDA's approval. 

Successful completion will result in the product being available potentially in the US and other parts of the world.

(For more, see: )

EvanTan7.19“We are very pleased to have achieved this major milestone in the protection of our intellectual property around the WaferiX™ technology,” commented Ms Eva Tan (photo), iX Biopharma’s Director of Corporate and Commercial Strategy.

“WaferiX™ is a multiple platform technology (matrix for drug carrier) that can deliver a vast number of drugs and other active ingredients approved by regulatory bodies.

"This administration allows faster delivery and reduction in loss of drugs due to hepatic and gastrointestinal metabolism, hence improving the bioavailability of the drugs. We look forward to developing this technology further in order to help patients who are suffering from suffering from pain and other health conditions”.


iX Biopharma has also filed corresponding patent applications in other jurisdictions that will allow the Company to seek similar patent protection in other key markets throughout the world.

iX Biopharma’s intellectual property rights for its sublingual wafer technology has been secured in key markets including China, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, India, Malaysia, and Indonesia, countries in the European Union and others.


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  • Lionel Lim