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IXICO jumps as it unveils two new contracts to help tackle rare neurological diseases

The neuroscience-focused analytics firm said the two deals were expected to contribute revenues in 2019 and into future periods
Huntington's Disease
One of the new contracts is to support an early phase study into Huntington’s Disease, a rare degenerative disorder

IXICO PLC (LON:IXI) shares jumped in early deals on Wednesday after it signed two contracts with new biopharmaceutical clients to help tackle rare neurological diseases.

The neuroscience-focused analytics firm said the first contract, to support an early phase study into Huntington’s Disease (HD), would be worth around £2mln and be delivered over seven years.

READ: IXICO to provide data analytics and neuroimaging services to a late-stage Huntington's programme

Huntington’s is a genetic disorder that causes the death of brain cells, resulting in impaired movement, behaviour, and cognition. There is currently no effective treatment.

The deal follows shortly behind an agreement to provide data analytics and neuroimaging services to a late-stage programme for people with HD that was signed in early March.

The second contract, a Phase 3 study for another rare neurological disease, was initially a start-up agreement to allow IXICO to deploy its services in the study, which is planning to recruit patients in June. A contract for the full programme is expected to be completed in the coming months.

IXICO said it would use its imaging analysis expertise to support the evaluation of drug safety and efficacy in both trials, with the two deals expected to contribute revenues in 2019 and into future periods.

Planning and site set-up activities for the two studies was also expected to start “imminently”.

Giulio Cerroni, chief executive of IXICO, said the two wins would build on the company’s “strong track record and growing momentum” in providing neuroimaging services to research programmes for underserved neurological diseases.

“The field of rare neurological disease research is rapidly advancing and our continued success in winning new business in this area demonstrates the confidence that our clients have in our scientific and technical expertise."

Senior VP says firm aiming to be "go to" provider for smaller biotechs

John Hall, IXICO’s Senior vice president of corporate development, told Proactive that the new client wins were part of a broader strategy to become the “go-to” provider for image analytics among smaller biotech firms.

“If you do a really good job working with the biotech’s, you can become their only preferred supplier for all of their imaging work…you become their de facto supplier for everything related to neuro-imaging”.

Hall added that the company is aiming to work more with smaller biotech firms and then potentially transfer services to larger players in the sector if their clients are bought out on the back of strong project data.

In lunchtime trading, shares were up 1.9% at 26.5p.

--Adds executive comment, interview and updates share price--

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