PharmAust to bank $700k from Feds

ASX-listed PharmAust’s innovative biotechnology work via its wholly owned subsidiaries, Epichem and Pitney Pharmaceuticals has been recognised by the Australian Tax Office with the company receiving more than $700,000 in a research and development tax rebate. The funds will be used to advance its clinical trial programs in dogs and humans with the company  now on a fast-tracked pathway to prove up the cancer fighting abilities of its “re-purposed” Monepantel drug.

The Perth-based company said this week that it had received $712,647 through an R&D Tax Refund from the ATO after lodging an application with AusIndustry related to its 2019 tax return.

It said funds received as a result of the R&D refund would be used to advance its potentially game-changing clinical trial programs of its anti-cancer drug known as Monepantel for both dogs and humans. 

The ASX junior is a clinical stage drug development company that is focused on targeted cancer therapeutics for humans and animals. It is developing its own cancer fighting drug in parallel with development work that it does through its 100% owned subsidiaries that pays the bills for its broader, in-house drug development work.

The company specialises in repurposing drugs which means that it further develops drugs that have already been approved at some level and adapts them to fight new medical ailments. This approach shortens the substantial approvals process that is often a significant hurdle in the biotechnology industry as the base drug already has some level of approval given its initial purpose, sometimes for completely unrelated treatments.

Pharmaust’s lead drug, Monepantel, is a potent inhibitor of the pathway that drives the development of cancer and to-date it has shown positive results in humans and dogs at reducing key prognostic markers for cancer.

PharmAust’s subsidiary Epichem, based in Perth, provides hi-tech products and services in chemistry and medical research for other parties and currently exports to over 33 nations. It has several global pharmaceutical players on its books and a team PHDs at its disposal. 

PharmAust’s other subsidiary, Pitney Pharmaceuticals, has exclusive rights to several oncology technology platforms which are being developed with the aim of improving the outcomes of patients with cancer.

The Federal Government’s R&D Tax Incentive scheme is a program jointly administered by the Australian Taxation Office and AusIndustry, under which companies can receive up to a 43.5% refundable tax offset for eligible expenses on research and development activities.

The fund has poured tens of millions of dollars into small capped ASX listed companies and has supported innumerable companies to make ground breaking developments. 

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