Galera Receives Complete Response Letter from U.S. FDA for Avasopasem Manganese

Galera Therapeutics

MALVERN, PA — Galera Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: GRTX) announced that it recently received a Complete Response Letter (CRL) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regarding the Company’s New Drug Application (NDA) for avasopasem manganese (avasopasem) for radiotherapy-induced severe oral mucositis (SOM) in patients with head and neck cancer undergoing standard-of-care treatment.

In the CRL, the FDA communicated that the results from the Phase 3 ROMAN trial together with the supporting data from the GT-201 trial are not sufficiently persuasive to establish substantial evidence of avasopasem’s effectiveness and safety for reducing severe oral mucositis in patients with head and neck cancer. FDA stated that results from an additional clinical trial will be required for resubmission.

The Company intends to request a Type A meeting with the FDA to understand the FDA’s rationale for its decision and discuss next steps to support an NDA resubmission seeking approval of avasopasem. The Company will also explore strategic alternatives, including partnering, for the continued development of avasopasem and rucosopasem.

“This response from the FDA is deeply disappointing for Galera and for patients who suffer from severe oral mucositis,” said Mel Sorensen, M.D., Galera’s President and CEO. “We continue to believe in avasopasem’s potential to bring a meaningful benefit to these patients, who currently have no FDA-approved drugs for this debilitating condition.”

Restructuring and Financial Update

“As we explore a potential approval path for avasopasem, we are taking decisive actions to extend our cash runway,” continued Dr. Sorensen. “Unfortunately, this necessitates reducing our workforce by approximately 70%. We are grateful for the many contributions our talented team has made over the years and their commitment to avasopasem.”

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Galera’s restructuring plan includes a wind-down of commercial readiness efforts and headcount reductions across several departments. The Company will focus resources to define the path forward for avasopasem and to progress the ongoing clinical trials for rucosopasem. Rucosopasem is the Company’s second product candidate in development to augment the anti-cancer efficacy of stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) for patients with non-small cell lung cancer and locally advanced pancreatic cancer.

“We will continue our focus on completing enrollment of our rucosopasem GRECO trials,” continued Dr. Sorensen. “Our GRECO-2 trial is a 220-patient trial in locally advanced pancreatic cancer intended to build upon the positive results observed in our placebo-controlled pilot trial, where we saw meaningful improvements in multiple endpoints including overall survival and tumor outcomes. There is an urgent need for novel therapies to extend survival in patients with pancreatic cancer, and we believe rucosopasem’s unique mechanism of action in combination with SBRT could offer a transformative treatment option.”

Galera estimates that its balance of cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities as of June 30, 2023 was $38.8 million. This figure is preliminary and is subject to completion of the Company’s financial closing procedures. The Company plans to file its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended June 30, 2023 on August 14, 2023. The Company now expects that its current cash will be sufficient to support operations into the second quarter of 2024.

The NDA submission for avasopasem included data from a total of 678 patients enrolled in two randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials (Phase 3 ROMAN and Phase 2b GT-201). The FDA granted Fast Track and Breakthrough Therapy designations to avasopasem for the reduction of SOM induced by radiotherapy. The NDA was accepted for priority review, which is granted to applications for therapies that, if approved, would be significant improvements in the safety or effectiveness of the treatment, diagnosis, or prevention of serious conditions compared to available therapies.

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