R&D tax boost for Gordagen ahead of US nutraceutical launch

By Gary Scattergood

- Last updated on GMT

The company received a tax incentive for its research and development work. ©iStock
The company received a tax incentive for its research and development work. ©iStock

Related tags Nutrition

Australian nutraceutical firm Gordagen Pharmaceuticals is preparing to launch its heart health and endurance products in the US by the end of the year.

The company revealed details of its US plan as it announced it had received a Research and Development Tax Incentive Refund of AUD$1.3m for the 2015/2016 financial year.

Gordagen specialises in developing biopharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals with tocotrienols (T3).

Last December the company announced it was working with marketing and distribution company Nutritional Products International (NPI) to enter the US market, and has now confirmed that they will launch this year.

“Gordagen’s initial nutraceutical products based on the MELT3™ delivery platform targeting heart health (nE1-Heart) and muscle recovery and exercise endurance (nE1-ElitE) are currently being prepared for a US launch prior to year-end,”​ said the firm.

The company was founded in Melbourne in 2012 by Dr Glenn Tong and Dr Michael Mathai, an associate professor of sports and nutrition physiology at the Victoria University in Ausia.

Its specific focus is targeting heart health, exercise endurance and muscle recovery after exercise, “with the natural therapeutic potential of T3 at the core of the products”.

Poor absorption

The company believes the benefits of T3 have been largely unexplored and unrecognised because of the difficulty of finding sufficient amounts of alpha-, delta- and gamma-isomers of T3, and because of the relatively poor absorption levels of T3 in the body.

“This poor absorption exists because the primary component of vitamin E, tocopherols, competes with T3s in the liver and because of the way digestion in the gut and metabolism in the liver occurs.

“[Our] products make use of its proprietary melt-delivery MELT3™ technology, which has been shown in the company's own clinical studies to have very good bioavailability. This solves the poor absorption problem and ensures adequate amounts of T3 are sent out to the targeted tissues throughout the body,”​ it said.

In terms of the tax refund, the amount was derived from AUD$2.8M of eligible expenses incurred across a range of Gordagen’s research and development programmes, including the development of new formulations for its MELT3™ delivery platform.  

Approximately AUD$1.2m of the refund will be used to settle a loan facility provided to Gordagen in 2015 by Metamor Capital Partners.  The remainder of the refund will be applied as working capital in preparation for the company’s nutraceutical product launch in the US.

The R&D Tax Incentive is a program jointly administered by the Australian Taxation Office and AusIndustry, under which companies receive a 45% refundable tax offset of expenditures on eligible research and development activities.

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