Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)

Organization, Nature of Operations and Basis of Presentation

Organization, Nature of Operations and Basis of Presentation
9 Months Ended
Sep. 30, 2019
Organization, Nature of Operations and Basis of Presentation  
Organization, Nature of Operations and Basis of Presentation

1. Organization, Nature of Operations and Basis of Presentation

Description of Business

Synthetic Biologics, Inc. (the “Company” or “Synthetic Biologics”) is a diversified clinical-stage company leveraging the microbiome to develop therapeutics designed to prevent and treat gastrointestinal (GI) diseases in areas of high unmet need. The Company’s lead candidates are: (1) SYN‑004 (ribaxamase) which is designed to degrade certain commonly used intravenous (IV) beta-lactam antibiotics within the gastrointestinal (GI) tract to prevent (a) microbiome damage, (b) Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI), (c) overgrowth of pathogenic organisms, (d) the emergence of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and (e) acute graft-versus-host-disease (aGVHD) in allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplant (HCT) recipients, and (2) SYN‑010 which is intended to reduce the impact of methane-producing organisms in the gut microbiome to treat an underlying cause of irritable bowel syndrome with constipation (IBS-C). The Company is also advancing SYN‑020, an oral formulation of the enzyme intestinal alkaline phosphatase (IAP) to treat both local GI and systemic diseases.

Basis of Presentation

The accompanying condensed consolidated financial statements have been prepared pursuant to the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) for interim financial information. Accordingly, they do not include all of the information and notes required by Accounting Principles Generally Accepted in the United States of America (“U.S. GAAP”) for complete financial statements. The accompanying condensed consolidated financial statements include all adjustments, comprised of normal recurring adjustments, considered necessary by management to fairly state the Company’s results of operations, financial position and cash flows. The operating results for the interim periods are not necessarily indicative of results that may be expected for any other interim period or for the full year. These condensed consolidated financial statements should be read in conjunction with the consolidated financial statements and notes thereto included in the Company’s 2018 Form 10‑K. The interim results for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2019 are not necessarily indicative of results for the full year.

The condensed consolidated financial statements are prepared in conformity with U.S. GAAP, which requires the use of estimates, judgments and assumptions that affect the amounts of assets and liabilities at the reporting date and the amounts of revenue and expenses in the periods presented. The Company believes that the accounting estimates employed are appropriate and the resulting balances are reasonable; however, due to the inherent uncertainties in making estimates, actual results may differ from the original estimates, requiring adjustments to these balances in future periods.


As of September 30, 2019, the Company has a significant accumulated deficit and with the exception of the three months ended June 30, 2010 and December 31, 2017, the Company has experienced significant losses and incurred negative cash flows since inception. The Company expects to continue incurring losses for the foreseeable future, with the recognition of revenue being contingent on successful phase 3 clinical trials and requisite approvals by the FDA. Historically, the Company has financed its operations primarily through public and private sales of its common stock and a private placement of its preferred stock, and it expects to continue to seek to obtain required capital in a similar manner. The Company has spent, and expects to continue to spend, a substantial amount of funds in connection with implementing its business strategy, including planned product development efforts, clinical trials and research and discovery efforts.

Cash and cash equivalents totaled approximately $18.7 million as of September 30, 2019, which includes the net proceeds of approximately $16.7 million from the sale of securities in October 2018 (the Offering) and net proceeds of approximately $12.2 million from sales of the Company's Common Stock , $0.001 par value (the "Common Stock") in “at-the-market” (ATM) equity offerings during 2018. With $17.6 million in cash available in early November 2019, the Company believes these resources will be sufficient to fund its operations through at least the end of the fourth quarter of 2020. Management believes its plan, which includes the further development of SYN‑020 and additional testing of SYN‑004 (ribaxamase) and SYN‑010, will allow the Company to meet its financial obligations, further advance key products, and maintain the Company’s planned operations for at least one year from the issuance date of these consolidated financial statements, while not sacrificing the strategic direction of the Company. If necessary, the Company may attempt to utilize the ATM or seek to raise additional capital on the open market, neither of which is guaranteed. Use of the ATM is limited by certain restrictions and management’s plan does not rely on additional capital from either of these sources. If the Company is not able to obtain additional capital (which is not assured at this time), the Company’s long term business plan may not be accomplished and the Company may be forced to cease certain development activities. More specifically, the completion of a Phase 3 clinical trial will require significant financing or a significant partnership.

Reverse Stock Split

On August 10, 2018, the Company effected a one for thirty-five reverse stock split (the “Reverse Stock Split”) of its authorized, issued and outstanding common stock. Unless otherwise noted, all references to share amounts in these financial statements reflect the Reverse Stock Split.

Every thirty-five shares of issued and outstanding Common Stock were automatically combined into one issued and outstanding share of Common Stock, without any change in the par value per share of Common Stock. All share and per share amounts in the financial statements have been retroactively adjusted for all periods presented to give effect to the Reverse Stock Split, including reclassifying an amount equal to the reduction in par value to additional paid-in capital.

The Reverse Stock Split affected all issued and outstanding shares of Common Stock, as well as Common Stock underlying stock options, warrants and convertible instruments outstanding immediately prior to the effectiveness of the Reverse Stock Split. The Reverse Stock Split reduced the total number of shares of Common Stock outstanding at the time of the Reverse Stock Split from approximately 128.5 million to approximately 3.7 million.

Recent Accounting Pronouncements and Developments

In February 2016, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Codification (“ASC”) 842, Leases. The guidance requires lessees to recognize assets and liabilities related to long-term leases on the balance sheet and expands disclosure requirements regarding leasing arrangements. The guidance is effective for reporting periods beginning after December 15, 2018 and early adoption is permitted. The guidance must be adopted on a modified retrospective transition approach and provides for certain practical expedients. The Company adopted this guidance effective January 1, 2019 using the modified retrospective transition approach wherein we applied the guidance to each lease that had commenced as of January 1, 2019 (the beginning of effective date) with a cumulative effect adjustment as of that date. The prior comparative period was not adjusted under this method and the Company has provided the required disclosures under ASC 840,  Leases for the comparative period to which ASC 840 is applied. The Company has have also elected to adopt the following package of practical expedients:


the Company did not reassess if any expired or existing contracts are or contain leases.


the Company did not reassess the initial direct costs for existing leases.


the Company did not reassess the classification of any expired or existing leases.

Additionally, the Company made ongoing accounting policy elections whereby it (i) did not recognize right of use (“ROU”) assets or lease liabilities for short-term leases (those with original terms of 12‑months or less) and (ii) does not  combine lease and non-lease elements of its operating leases. The determination of whether an arrangement contains a lease and the classification of a lease, if applicable, is made at lease commencement.

Upon adoption of the new guidance on January 1, 2019, the Company recorded a ROU asset of approximately $537,000 (net of taxes and existing deferred rent liability) and recognized a lease liability of approximately $939,000.