Privately-owned psychedelic medicine company Beckley Psytech Limited is buying Eleusis Therapeutics Limited in an all-stock transaction. By acquiring Eleusis, Beckley will get full developmental and commercial rights for Eleusis’ assets which will further enhance Beckley Psytech’s innovative and differentiated pipeline of psychedelic compounds. Eleusis CEO Shlomi Raz will be appointed Chief Business Officer of Beckley Psytech, and the Eleusis research and development team will be integrated into Beckley Psytech with immediate effect.
Shlomi Raz, CEO and founder of Eleusis, said: “Beckley have been pioneers in psychedelic science for more than two decades and we are excited to become a part of that story through this transaction. We believe Eleusis represents an excellent acquisition for Beckley Psytech given our shared commitment to developing psychedelic drug therapies for patients in urgent need of new treatment options. I am thrilled to be joining the leadership team at Beckley Psytech as we look to develop meaningful, practical and cost-effective solutions and treatments to these devastating conditions.”
Eleusis had been targeted by the Silver Spike special acquisition vehicle, but the two companies agreed to terminate the deal in June of 2022.
The acquisition brings Eleusis’ ELE-101, a next-generation, short-duration psychedelic ready for Phase 1 clinical trials, to Beckley Psytech’s pipeline. ELE-101 is an intravenous (IV) formulation of psilocin, the active metabolite of psilocybin. This proprietary formulation of psilocin has the potential to deliver a more consistent and controllable response in patients, with a rapid onset, significantly shorter treatment duration, and less variability compared to oral formulations of psilocybin. ELE-101 has US patents granted for the composition of matter and is highly complementary to Beckley Psytech’s strategic focus on developing short-duration psychedelic therapies. Beckley Psytech aims to initiate a Phase 1 single ascending dose study of ELE-101 in healthy volunteers before the end of 2022, with a proof-of-concept Phase 2a clinical study in patients with depression following soon after.
In addition, the acquisition provides Beckley Psytech with access to a library of novel psychedelic compounds which the company will add to its pipeline of differentiated NCEs for use in psychiatry and beyond.
Cosmo Feilding Mellen, CEO of Beckley Psytech, said: “This is a hugely exciting acquisition for Beckley Psytech, and we are delighted to add Eleusis’ innovative products to our portfolio of differentiated clinical assets. Our highly focused pipeline, now strengthened with a Phase 1 ready, next-generation, short-acting psychedelic, will deliver multiple value inflection points over the next 18 months. We are also very pleased to welcome the Eleusis team to Beckley Psytech and we look forward to benefiting from their exceptional knowledge and experience. With a cash runway for operations extending into 2025, this acquisition reinforces Beckley Psytech’s position as a market leader in the development of psychedelic therapies.”
In further news, Beckley Psytech can announce that it has selected BPL-003 as its lead candidate for its upcoming MHRA-approved Phase 2 studies in depression and alcohol use disorder in combination with psychotherapy. BPL-003, a patented intranasal benzoate formulation of 5-MeO-DMT, has thus far demonstrated good tolerability and favorable pharmacokinetics in an ongoing randomized, single ascending dose Phase 1 study.
Following a comprehensive examination of Beckley Psytech’s strategy and portfolio, the team has also taken the decision to discontinue its clinical program evaluating oral psilocybin for the treatment of Short-lasting Unilateral Neuralgiform Headache Attacks (SUNHA). Beckley Psytech will continue the analysis of existing data from the Phase 1b clinical study and apply the learnings from this program to current and future pipeline candidates. This decision will allow the Company to maintain the efficient use of resources and prioritize the most promising clinical assets in its portfolio, which, with the addition of ELE-101, now includes two patent-protected, clinical-stage, short-acting psychedelic compounds.