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Engage Therapeutics, Inc.

Developing an easy to use, hand-held inhaler to stop epileptic seizure activity


Presenter: Greg Mayes


Monday, November 12, 2018

Embassy Suites, Chesterbrook, Pennsylvania (directions)




The Medical Challenge for Engage Therapeutics

From its headquarters in Summit, New Jersey, Engage Therapeutics is developing Staccato®  alprazolam, an easy to use, hand-held inhaler that could be the first rescue treatment with the potential to stop epileptic seizure activity dead in its tracks. Epilepsy is a condition that causes seizures and is the fourth most common neurological problem in the world according to the Epilepsy Foundation. Approximately three million patients in the United States are living with epilepsy, and one-third of those patients have uncontrolled seizures because no available treatment works for them. Twenty percent of those patients have a seizure pattern that they can predict and need a rescue treatment to stop on-going seizure activity before their seizure progresses.


Clinical Trials

In a phase 2a proof of concept trial, Staccato alprazolam aborted seizure-like activity in less than two minutes. The therapy, which has entered a phase 2b study, combines the FDA-approved Staccato delivery technology with alprazolam, a well-known benzodiazepine that has potent and effective anti-epileptic properties, to rapidly terminate seizure activity once it has begun. If successful, this would be the first product approved for such an indication.


Regulatory Pathway

Because the active ingredients and the inhaler are already approved for different indications, Engage Therapeutics is using the 505(b)(2) regulatory pathway to develop and seek approval for Staccato alprazolam. This should result in a less expensive and time-consuming development program. In a phase 2a study, Staccato alprazolam demonstrated a reduction in seizure-like activity in a photosensitivity model.


How It Works

Alprazolam, which has decades of safety data supporting its continued commercial availability, has shown anti-epileptic activity, and the Staccato system, achieves an unprecedented speed of onset. When patients draw a normal breath through the Staccato system, the substrate surface instantaneously heats to create a condensation aerosol. The patient inhales particles ideally sized for systemic delivery of excipient-free drug down into the narrower, more vascularized tissue of the deep lung, allowing fast and more complete absorption into the bloodstream.


The Staccato system is the only technology on the market that non-invasively delivers a drug as quickly as an IV route of administration and has a bioavailability greater than ninety percent (90%). This innovation in aerosol delivery has the potential to revolutionize the treatment of epileptic seizure activity by stopping the seizure almost as soon as it starts.



Engage Therapeutics closed on a $23 million Series A financing round in September, 2017. TPG Biotech led the Series A financing, and was joined by Adage Capital Management and Lumira Capital. These established crossover and venture capital firms have track records of investing in life science companies that have produced truly innovative products based on transformative technologies.



3 Major Issues


  1. Do we need to do an open-label outpatient study?
  2. Do we need to open study sites outside of US?
  3. When do you begin strategic acquirer outreach?





6:30 - Cocktails & Dinner (Cash bar and special 2-entree buffet menu)

8:00 - Greg Mayes, Engage's President, CEO and Founder, will deliver "Elevator" Pitch to the Group

8:20 - A Panel will address three major issues crucial to helping the Company reach the next level.

9:00 - Open discussion: members and guests




Available Media

Please note: All information obtained here is the property of those presenting and should not be copied or duplicated without written consent.



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Engage Therapeutics Webcast 11/12/18


The webcast recording of the PCCI meeting is posted on the PCCI website a few days after the event.

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Contact: Peter van der Kam, | (610) 296-8086




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