A Canadian drug company with a Fort Thomas subsidiary that makes products aimed at treating obesity and infertility has purchased a small Cincinnati biotech company working on drugs to address female sexual dysfunction.
M Pharmaceutical Inc. of Vancouver, British Columbia, is acquiring 40 J’s LLC of Turpin Hills in exchange for $1.5 million in cash and about 80 million shares to be paid over the next two years. The shares were trading Friday over the counter at roughly five cents, which would make the 80 million shares worth about $4 million.
The deal has a significant family connection: Gary Thompson, chief executive officer of M Pharmaceutical Inc.’s U.S. business, is the brother of the developer of 40 J’s LLC’s products and the uncle of the company’s managers, James and Jeffrey Thompson.
Gary Thompson said that after a career in sales and management, he came back to his native Northern Kentucky four years ago expecting to settle down into retirement. But his brother, Dr. Ron Thompson, a retired Cincinnati obstetrician-gynecologist with nearly three dozen patents to his credit, asked Gary Thompson to develop some of his ideas into products.
The first product was a reformulation of orlistat, a prescription drug already approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat obesity and sold in a lower-dose over-the-counter formulation under the brand name alli. But orlistat produced a host of unpleasant side effects. Gary Thompson said he expects that his company's reformulation will avoid the side effects and will undergo FDA testing before being released to the market.
In October, M Pharmaceutical hired Blue Ash-based Camargo Pharmaceutical Services to help it navigate the regulatory landscape to win FDA approval for its patented Chelatexx technology, also known as itsC-103 reformulation of orlistat. Orlistat is patented until 2030 in the U.S.
M Pharmaceutical said this month that it plans to sell prescription and over-the-counter versions of its reformulated orlistat.
Gary Thompson said M Pharmaceutical Inc. approached his family in the fall of 2015 to acquire the reformulation. The Canadian company, which opened for business that same year, created the U.S. subsidiary and installed Gary Thompson as CEO.
In acquiring 40 J’s, M Pharmaceutical Inc. now has the startup’s other products in the pipeline, including drugs that Gary Thompson said are aimed at easing female sexual dysfunction, “which is the holy grail that people are looking for.”
Gary Thompson also said M Pharmaceutical Inc. will relaunch another 40 J’s product called ToConceive, which aims to assist women in getting pregnant.