Damon Burrows isn’t a scientist. And he didn’t start IACTA Pharmaceuticals, an early stage drug development company, because he believed his discovery could change the world.
He founded IACTA because he was free. Free from his role as general counsel at Scilex Pharmaceuticals. And free to bring life-changing ophthalmic therapies to market.
When Scilex merged with Sorrento in 2019, he and a team of executives from Allergan, where he previously served as VP, associate general counsel, moved away from big pharma to focus on innovation. Early on, IACTA partnered with Ora, which gave it depth of reach in asset identification, while the powerhouse executive team he selected helped move those assets forward.
As IACTA emerges from stealth mode with positive early data on its lead product, OIS Podcast host Rob Rothman, MD, caught up with Damon to discuss his career evolution, the ocular drug market potential, and IACTA’s promising clinical programs.
The newest addition to the IACTA family, IC 800, an ocular pro-wound-healing analgesic, is already causing a stir in the eye care community. The drug system is based on DENKIs (dual ENKephalinase inhibitors), which aim to protect pain-inhibiting enkephalins from degradation. When enkephalins concentration increases, a physiological analgesic effect occurs.
IACTA’s dry eye franchise, IC 265, is moving forward via a partnership with Hong Kong-based Zhaoke Ophthalmology Pharmaceutical. The company starts enrolling soon for U.S. and multiregional clinical trials.