Many valuable drug development opportunities, either from academia or from discovery-focused biotech companies, lose their way in development and never reach the patients. Small Pharma, which is based out of London, is dedicated to identifying these opportunities and ensuring that the value in the underlying pharmaceutical assets is preserved. The leadership team have experience of drug development, are patent lawyers and have looked at difficult to patent treatments for depression.

Their lead programme is based on an active metabolite of ketamine, which they are developing as a rapid-acting antidepressant. SPL801B has a different mode of action to ketamine, has a promising safety profile and early studies indicate a lack of dissociative and addictive side effects.