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Retrophin takes the ax to its Cambridge office as it concentrates on late-stage R&D push

Retrophin CEO Stephen Aselage

Retrophin is closing up its office in Cambridge, MA and consolidating operations in its headquarters based in San Diego as it focuses on pushing ahead with late-stage R&D.

In a filing with the SEC the biotech said “select” staffers would be relocated to the West Coast, with replacements being recruited for the rest of the positions after the office is closed by the end of this year.

There was no immediate word on how many staffers will be affected by the move, but Retrophin estimated that the reorganization will cost about $4.5 million to complete. The biotech $RTRX has a market cap of $740 million.

Retrophin and its partner Ligand Pharmaceuticals got a boost last fall when the biotech reported positive top-line results for a Phase II study of sparsentan treating a rare kidney disease called focal segmental glomerulosclerosis, or FSGS. Retrophin in-licensed the drug from Ligand when the notorious Martin Shkreli ran the company. Later Shkreli was booted out and Retrophin’s board laid a bevy of accusations against him, helping inspire a federal indictment on fraud charges after biotech’s bad boy raised a ruckus with his decision to boost the price of generic Daraprim by more than 5000%

Just a few days ago the company reported that it is mapping a Phase III study with input from the FDA for its lead drug sparsentan with a planned interim analysis of proteinuria as a surrogate endpoint that could open the door to an accelerated application. That study is now slated to get underway in the second half of this year.

Retrophin is also pursuing studies for RE-024, a drug for pantothenate kinase-associated neurodegeneration, or PKAN.


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