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Innovation Pharmaceuticals halts skin drug development after trial fail

Innovation Pharmaceuticals Inc. discontinued the development of its psoriasis drug Prurisol after the therapy failed to show adequate efficacy in a mid-stage trial.

The phase 2b study was evaluating Prurisol in moderate-to-severe chronic plaque psoriasis, an autoimmune disease that causes raised, red, scaly patches to appear on the skin. Prurisol failed to meet its efficacy goals in both 300-milligram and 400-milligram doses as measured by the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index scale, the company said in a filing.

While the Beverly, Mass.-based company plans additional analysis of Prurisol data, Innovation said it is focusing instead on development efforts on its clinical assets Kevetrin and Brilacidin.

Kevetrin is a therapy for ovarian cancer while Brilacidin is a treatment for oral mucositis, or mouth sores — a common complication of cancer treatments.

Meanwhile, Krishna Menon resigned as a director of the company. Innovation said the resignation is not a result of any disagreement with the company.