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· New dendrimer-glyphosate formulations demonstrate improved efficacy and rain-fastness
· Higher loading formulations and soil penetration achieved
· Dendrimers applicable to a wide range of agrochemical products
Starpharma Holdings Ltd (ASX:SPL;OTCQX: SPHRY) today announced that its new agrochemical dendrimer formulations have shown further improved features compared to commercially available products.
Starpharma has conducted a whole range of new studies in its internal agrochemical program including with its lead program, an enhanced reformulation of the best-selling herbicide glyphosate (marketed under a variety of trade names including Roundup®).
The new dendrimer glyphosate reformulations have confirmed previously reported higher efficacy than existing marketed glyphosate formulations. The significance of these new results is in the potential to further broaden the conditions under which the Starpharma glyphosate formulation is effective, such as in adverse environments.
In addition to the improved efficacy referred to above, Starpharma has also recently shown its formulations to be more rain-fast compared to glyphosate formulations without dendrimer. Starpharma's dendrimer formulations demonstrated up to a 150%-250% improvement in efficacy when rain was applied four hours after treatment with the test formulations.
Glyphosate has global sales of approximately US$5 billion annually and as an off-patent chemical represents the largest opportunity for an enhanced formulation in the US$44 billion* agrochemical market.
"In addition to improving major products such as glyphosate, there are crop protection products with sales of more than $5 billion which will come off patent in the next 4-5 years. This creates a significant commercial opportunity for Starpharma's dendrimers to deliver improved, proprietary formulations to this large and growing market," said Dr Jackie Fairley, Chief Executive Officer.
Other recent formulation activities at Starpharma have been targeted at improving the loading of commercially important crop protection products. Using formulations that include dendrimers, Starpharma has increased the loading of one important herbicide by 50% more than formulations currently available in the market. High loading formulations generally have an improved cost of goods by reducing transport and handling costs and are sought after by both farmers and crop protection companies.
Soil penetration is also important for the performance of some crop protection products to ensure that they reach their targets. In laboratory studies using imidacloprid, a US$1BN product, Starpharma has shown that its dendrimers can tailor how this important insecticide moves by either increasing or decreasing percolation through a substrate. Common uses of imidacloprid include termite control and the control of other soil inhabiting insects.
In addition to its internal programs Starpharma continues to advance existing agrochemical partnerships, and in August announced a new Crop Protection Agreement with Nufarm. Nufarm is one of the world's leading crop protection companies with sales in excess of A$2billion.
Starpharma's agrochemicals program has been assisted by funding under the Victorian Government's Small Technology Industries Uptake Program (STIUP), and research is also ongoing in partnership with a number of global agrochemical companies.
*CropLife US, Phillips McDougal data
About Starpharma Holdings Limited
Starpharma Holdings Limited (ASX:SPL, OTCQX:SPHRY), located in Melbourne Australia, is an ASX 300 company and is a world leader in the development of dendrimer products for pharmaceutical, life science and other applications. Starpharma’s underlying technology is built around dendrimers – a type of synthetic nanoscale polymer that is highly regular in size and structure and well suited to pharmaceutical uses. Starpharma has three core development programs: VivaGel® portfolio, drug delivery, and agrochemicals with the Company developing a number of products internally and others via commercial partnerships.
Starpharma’s lead product is VivaGel® (SPL7013 Gel), a gel-based formulation of a proprietary dendrimer. VivaGel® is under clinical development for the treatment and prevention of bacterial vaginosis (BV) and also as a vaginal microbicide to prevent the transmission of sexually transmitted infections including HIV and genital herpes. Starpharma has also signed separate licence agreements with Ansell Limited (ASX:ANN) and Okamoto Industries Inc (Tokyo Stock Exchange) to market a value-added, VivaGel®-coated condom. Ansell manufactures and sells leading condom brands worldwide, including Lifestyles®, ZERO® and SKYN®. Okamoto is the market leader for condoms sold in Japan, the world’s second largest condom market.
In the wider pharmaceutical and life science fields, Starpharma has both partnered and internal programs in Drug Delivery. Partners include GSK, Lilly and AstraZeneca. In its internal program Starpharma recently announced significant tumour-targeting results in its docetaxel (Taxotere®) program, with animal studies resulting in levels of the cancer drug in tumour tissue more than 40 times greater than seen with the convention formulation. The company is also exploring dendrimer opportunities in agrochemicals in a series of industry partnerships with leading industry players including Nufarm (ASX:NUF) as well as with internal programs including an enhanced version of glyphosate (the active ingredient in Roundup®).
Forward Looking Statements
This document contains certain forward-looking statements, relating to Starpharma’s business, which can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “promising”, “plans”, “anticipated”, “will”, “project”, “believe”, “forecast”, “expected”, “estimated”, “targeting”, “aiming”, “set to”, “potential”, “seeking to”, “goal”, “could provide”, “intends”, “is being developed”, “could be”, “on track”, or similar expressions, or by express or implied discussions regarding potential filings or marketing approvals, or potential future sales of product candidates. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements. There can be no assurance that any existing or future regulatory filings will satisfy the FDA’s and other health authorities’ requirements regarding any one or more product candidates nor can there be any assurance that such product candidates will be approved by any health authorities for sale in any market or that they will reach any particular level of sales. In particular, management’s expectations regarding the approval and commercialization of the product candidates could be affected by, among other things, unexpected clinical trial results, including additional analysis of existing clinical data, and new clinical data; unexpected regulatory actions or delays, or government regulation generally; our ability to obtain or maintain patent or other proprietary intellectual property protection; competition in general; government, industry, and general public pricing pressures; and additional factors that involve significant risks and uncertainties about our products, product candidates, financial results and business prospects. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described herein as anticipated, believed, estimated or expected. Starpharma is providing this information as of the date of this document and does not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this document as a result of new information, future events or developments or otherwise.
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Dr Jackie Fairley
Chief Executive Officer
+61 3 8532 2704
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