(Reuters) – Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals Inc said on Tuesday its lead experimental antibiotic to treat serious infections did not meet the main goals in a late-stage study, sending its shares plunging more than 60 percent in after-market trading.
The antibiotic, eravacycline, was being studied in a pivotal 1,205 patient study for the treatment of complicated urinary tract infections.
Tetraphase said the drug did not achieve the main goal of non-inferiority compared to patients who were treated with Merck’s drug, ertapenem.
Eravacycline is a synthetic tetracycline derivative for drug-resistant bacterial infections administered intravenously in hospital.
The company in January filed a marketing application for eravacycline with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat intra-abdominal infections.
Tetraphase Chief Executive Guy Macdonald said last year annual sales of the company’s lead drug for serious bacterial infections could climb as high as $700 million, if approved.
The company’s shares were down 58 percent at $2.27.
Reporting by Akankshita Mukhopadhyay in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila