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Verona Pharma (AIM:VRP) | RNS | Verona Pharma Announces Publication of Phase 2b COPD Symptom Data in the International Journal of Ch
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Verona Pharma Announces Publication of Phase 2b COPD Symptom Data in the International Journal of Ch

Publication highlights ensifentrine’s potential to provide rapid symptom relief

LONDON and RALEIGH, N.C., Sept. 16, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Verona Pharma plc (AIM: VRP) (Nasdaq: VRNA) (“Verona Pharma”), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on respiratory diseases, announces publication of a detailed analysis of symptom data from a previously reported Phase 2b clinical trial with nebulized ensifentrine as a maintenance treatment for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (“COPD”) in a leading peer reviewed journal for specialists and healthcare professionals, International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. The analyses demonstrate that ensifentrine meaningfully improved COPD symptoms in only 4 weeks, with the largest effect on breathlessness, across two different assessment tools, the E-RS™: COPD breathlessness subscale and the Transitional Dyspnea Index (TDI)*. Statistically significant and meaningful improvements in cough/sputum and chest symptoms were also observed, as well as improvements in health-related quality of life measured by SGRQ-C.

The paper is entitled "Symptom improvement following treatment with the inhaled dual phosphodiesterase 3 and 4 inhibitor ensifentrine in patients with moderate to severe COPD – a detailed analysis" and is available here.

Results from the 4-week 405-patient study, first reported in March 2018, demonstrated that ensifentrine met the primary endpoint producing clinically and statistically significant improvements in lung function at all doses. In addition, clinically relevant secondary endpoints were met including significant progressive improvements in COPD symptoms. Further information about this study can be found at www.clinicaltrials.gov, NCT03443414.

Ensifentrine is an inhaled, first-in-class, dual inhibitor of the enzymes phosphodiesterase 3 and 4 that combines bronchodilator and anti-inflammatory activities in one compound. In January 2020, Verona Pharma reported positive top-line results from a second 4-week 416-patient Phase 2b study, in which nebulized ensifentrine was added on to inhaled tiotropium (Spiriva® Respimat®) therapy, a long acting anti-muscarinic (“LAMA”) bronchodilator, in symptomatic COPD patients. Ensifentrine has been well tolerated in clinical trials involving more than 1,300 people to date.

Henrik Watz, M.D., Pulmonary Research Institute at Lung Clinic Grosshansdorf, Germany, and lead author on the paper commented: “The fast and meaningful effect of ensifentrine on COPD symptoms, particularly breathlessness, is very encouraging over this relatively short 4-week study. Ensifentrine’s anti-inflammatory activity may be responsible for this impact on symptoms, which adds to its potential as a novel COPD treatment.”

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*E-RS™ - Evaluating Respiratory Symptoms, TDI - Transition Dyspnea Index and SGRQ-C - St. George’s Respiratory Questionnaire are recognized patient-reported outcome measures evaluating the effect of treatments on COPD symptoms and quality of life for use in clinical studies of COPD.

For further information, please contact:

Verona Pharma plcTel: +44 (0)20 3283 4200
David Zaccardelli, Chief Executive Officerinfo@veronapharma.com
Victoria Stewart, Director of Communications 
  
N+1 Singer
Tel: +44 (0)20 7496 3000

(Nominated Adviser and UK Broker)  
Aubrey Powell / George Tzimas / Iqra Amin 
(Corporate Finance) 
Tom Salvesen (Corporate Broking) 
  
Optimum Strategic Communications
Tel: +44 (0)203 950 9144

(European Media and Investor Enquiries) verona@optimumcomms.com  
Mary Clark / Eva Haas / Shabnam Bashir 
  
Argot Partners

Tel: +1 212-600-1902

(US Investor Enquiries)verona@argotpartners.com  
Kimberly Minarovich / Michael Barron 

About Ensifentrine

Ensifentrine (RPL554) is an investigational, first-in-class, inhaled, dual inhibitor of the enzymes phosphodiesterase 3 and 4 (“PDE3” and “PDE4”). This dual inhibition enables it to combine both bronchodilator and anti-inflammatory effects in one compound. Ensifentrine also activates the Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Conductance Regulator (“CFTR”), which is beneficial in reducing mucous viscosity and improving mucociliary clearance. Ensifentrine’s mechanism of action has the potential to alleviate respiratory symptoms such as breathlessness and cough and work against inflammation triggered by viruses.

Ensifentrine has demonstrated significant and clinically meaningful improvements in both lung function and symptoms, including breathlessness, in Verona Pharma’s Phase 2 clinical studies in patients with moderate to severe Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (“COPD”). In addition, nebulized ensifentrine showed further improved lung function and reduced lung volumes in COPD patients taking standard short- and long-acting bronchodilator therapy, including maximum bronchodilator treatment with dual/triple therapy. Ensifentrine has been well tolerated in clinical trials involving more than 1,300 subjects to date.

About Verona Pharma

Verona Pharma is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing innovative therapies for the treatment of respiratory diseases with significant unmet medical needs. If successfully developed and approved, Verona Pharma’s product candidate, ensifentrine, has the potential to be the first therapy for the treatment of respiratory diseases that combines bronchodilator and anti-inflammatory activities in one compound. The Company plans to initiate its Phase 3 clinical program ENHANCE (“Ensifentrine as a Novel inHAled Nebulized COPD thErapy”) later in 2020 for nebulized ensifentrine for COPD maintenance treatment. The Company raised gross proceeds of $200 million through a private placement in July 2020 and expects the funds to support its operations and Phase 3 clinical program into 2023. Two additional formulations of ensifentrine are currently in Phase 2 development for the treatment of COPD: dry powder inhaler (“DPI”) and pressurized metered-dose inhaler (“pMDI”). Ensifentrine also has potential applications in COVID-19, cystic fibrosis, asthma and other respiratory diseases. For more information, please visit www.veronapharma.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements. All statements contained in this press release that do not relate to matters of historical fact should be considered forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, the development of ensifentrine, the progress and timing of initiation of clinical trials, the goals and design of clinical trials, the potential for ensifentrine to be a first-in-class phosphodiesterase 3 and 4 inhibitor and to be the first therapy for the treatment of respiratory diseases to combine bronchodilator and anti-inflammatory effects in one compound, the potential of ensifentrine to alleviate COPD symptoms such as breathlessness and cough and work against inflammation, the ability of the Company to progress the development of ensifentrine and to secure supplies of the drug for ongoing development and commercialization, the sufficiency of funds to supports its operations and Phase 3 clinical program into 2023, and the potential of ensifentrine in the treatment of COPD, COVID-19, cystic fibrosis, asthma and other respiratory diseases.

These forward-looking statements are based on management's current expectations. These statements are neither promises nor guarantees, but involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from our expectations expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, the following: our limited operating history; our need for additional funding to complete development and commercialization of ensifentrine, which may not be available and which may force us to delay, reduce or eliminate our development or commercialization efforts; the reliance of our business on the success of ensifentrine, our only product candidate under development; economic, political, regulatory and other risks involved with international operations; the lengthy and expensive process of clinical drug development, which has an uncertain outcome; serious adverse, undesirable or unacceptable side effects associated with ensifentrine, which could adversely affect our ability to develop or commercialize ensifentrine; potential delays in enrolling patients, which could adversely affect our research and development efforts and the completion of our clinical trials; we may not be successful in developing ensifentrine for multiple indications; our ability to obtain approval for and commercialize ensifentrine in multiple major pharmaceutical markets; misconduct or other improper activities by our employees, consultants, principal investigators, and third-party service providers; our future growth and ability to compete depends on retaining our key personnel and recruiting additional qualified personnel; material differences between our “top-line” data and final data; our reliance on third parties, including clinical research organizations, clinical investigators, manufacturers and suppliers, and the risks related to these parties’ ability to successfully develop and commercialize ensifentrine; and lawsuits related to patents covering ensifentrine and the potential for our patents to be found invalid or unenforceable; and our vulnerability to natural disasters, global economic factors and other unexpected events, including health epidemics or pandemics like the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). These and other important factors under the caption “Risk Factors” in our Annual Report on Form 20-F filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) on February 27, 2020, under the caption “Supplemental Risk Factor Disclosures” in our Report on Form 6-K filed with the SEC on April 30, 2020, under the caption “Risk Factors” in our Registration Statement on Form F-1 filed with the SEC on August 17, 2020, and our other reports filed with the SEC, could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the forward-looking statements made in this press release. Any such forward-looking statements represent management's estimates as of the date of this press release. While we may elect to update such forward-looking statements at some point in the future, we disclaim any obligation to do so, even if subsequent events cause our views to change. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing our views as of any date subsequent to the date of this press release.

Quick facts: Verona Pharma

Price: 55

Market: AIM
Market Cap: £228 m
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