Danish vegetable oils and fats company Aarhus Oliefabrik announced yesterday that together with Astion, it will increase the development portfolio of BSP Pharma - focusing on products using oil from the African shea nut.
As a result, BSP Pharma, the jointly owned Astion-Aarhus company, has started the development of two new products, one of which - BSP 103 - is directed towards the treatment of psoriasis and the other - BSP 110 - towards the treatment of herpes simplex.
According to the company, the reason for deciding to increase activities at this point is to enable BSP Pharma to be in a position to undertake clinical trials of the new products during the winter of 2003/2004.
All of the four products included in BSP Pharma's development portfolio are based on a patented technology developed by Astion. According to this technology, the active ingredients with anti-inflammatory effects are derived from oil from the African shea nut. The BSP Pharma increase in activities will be financed by a direct placing whereby Aarhus Oliefabrik has subscribed for new shares in BSP Pharma. The capital will be increased by DKK 15 million in two stages; Aarhus Oliefabrik will subscribe for the first part immediately and expects to subscribe for the second part in the summer of 2003. After the subscription, Aarhus Oliefabrik's ownership share will total 70.7 per cent.
According to the company, it has not yet been determined under which legislation BSP 103 and BSP 110 should be marketed. Selecting the dietary supplement and cosmetics legislations, it should be possible to launch the products during 2005 whilst the launch most probably would be deferred for another two to four years under the OTC legislation. In addition, the legislation selected would have a significant influence on actual sales volumes and prices. In a statement yesterday Aarhus said that it is not possible to estimate the future earnings from BSP 103 and BSP 110 at this early stage.