Biotech focus

AXIM Biotech Signs CRO deal for its Ophthalmology Treatments Clinical Program

The global market for glaucoma and dry eye treatments could surpass $10 billion over the coming years. Since the 1970s, researchers have noticed that cannabinoids could play a vital role in treating these conditions. The application of cannabinoids to the treatment of these conditions could unlock significant long-term potential for both patients and companies bringing these innovative new drugs to market.

In this article, we will take a closer look at AXIM Biotechnology Inc. (OTCQB: AXIM) and its recent agreement with Ora to perform clinical trials targeting glaucoma and dry eye.

Enormous Potential Markets

The global market for glaucoma pharmaceuticals is expected to climb from roughly $4.7 billion in 2015 to nearly $6.1 billion in 2020, according to Market Scope, driven by a patient population that’s expected to reach 141.6 million by that time. Despite new product approvals, approximately 40% of glaucoma patients require more than one intra-ocular pressure (“IOP”) lowering medication and many treatments are ineffective.

In addition to glaucoma, the market for dry eye medications and devices reached $3.2 billion in 2015 and is expected to grow at a 6.9% compound annual growth rate over the ensuing five years. Market Scope estimates that there are nearly 337 million people suffering from severe, moderate, or episodic dry eye syndrome around the world, which is a ubiquitous, complex, and multifactorial condition with few effective treatment options.

These markets represent more than $10 billion in combined revenue potential over the coming years. AXIM Biotech trades with a market capitalization of just over $500 million with a vast portfolio of clinical programs targeting everything from multiple sclerosis pain to glaucoma and dry eye. Capturing even a small portion of the market could result in significant long-term shareholder value given the large and growing market size.

Cannabinoid-based Treatments

As early as the 1970s, researchers noticed that smoking marijuana lowered intraocular pressure by 25% to 30%. Researchers found CB1 receptors in human ocular tissues and noticed that CB1 receptor agonists could lower IOP in the eye. The established neuroprotective properties of cannabinoids could also play a role in preventing the death of retinal ganglion cells associated with glaucoma and ultimately help prevent the loss of eyesight.

AXIM Biotech hopes to harness the power of cannabinoids to treat glaucoma and dry eye through its AX-1603 and AX-1606 clinical programs. Recently, the company retained Ora Inc., a global contract research organization (“CRO”), to perform the company’s upcoming product development and clinical trials in these areas. As a leading ophthalmology CRO, Ora has extensive experiencing advancing products from preclinical to post-marketing phases.

The clinical trials will be run under the supervision of Prof. Robert Ritch, Surgeon Director Emeritus and Chief of Glaucoma Services at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. Prof. Ritch is a world-renowned expert in ophthalmology and glaucoma in particular and has joined the company’s Board of Advisors in December 2016 - a significant win for the company’s ophthalmology program.

Looking Ahead

AXIM Biotechnologies Inc. (OTCQB: AXIM) is uniquely positioned to capitalize on the glaucoma and dry eye markets. By harnessing the power of cannabinoids, the company hopes to develop effective treatment options for markets worth more than $10 billion per year. The company’s recently retained Ora Inc. - a leading CRO in the space - to help move these efforts forward, which could create numerous upcoming catalysts for shareholders.

For more information, visit the company’s website or see their investor presentation.