Axovant Sciences Ltd. Shares Have Dropped Over 50% Today, Here’s Why.

Switzerland-based Axovant Sciences Ltd (NASDAQ:AXON) shares have plummeted over 50% today as it announces it has scrapped its program and experiments for curing a type of dementia. The drug was called intrepirdine and it has failed its lead experimental treatment in its mid-stage study.

The company made a statement, saying compared to the placebo the two doses of intrepirdine administered to its patients showed no significant improvement of motor function. This is three months after, Axovant announced that it would stop testing its drug with Alzheimer’s patients, as the later stage trial failed.

The mid-stage study, dealt with 35 mg and 70 mg doses of the drug, with its dementia patients with Lewy bodies and the study, was over the course of 24 weeks.

David Hung, Axovant CEO stated:

Based on the totality of intepirdine data to date, there is no evidence to support its further development. We are incredibly disappointed and saddened for the millions of people living with these difficult conditions, and are deeply grateful to the patients, caregivers, and investigators who participated in our trials.”

This announcement is another blow for many biotech and pharmaceutical companies that have been trying to develop treatments for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. The Alzheimer’s Association estimates that it affected nearly 5.5 million Americans last year.

Pfizer Inc, (NYSE:PFE), the American pharmaceutical heavyweight, announced that it would no longer lead research and aim its focus on treating both Alzheimers and Parkinsons diseases. This new strategy will lead to over 300 employees being laid off and the company intends on using that money for other development products.

Axovant, bought the drug intepirdine from GlaxoSmithKline PLC (NYSE:GSK) back in 2014, for $5 million.

At the time of reporting, Axovant shares are selling at $2.305, down -57.08% for the day.

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