Shares of NephroGenex fell 7 percent Wednesday after the Research Triangle Park drug developer reported a wider net loss in the fourth quarter.
The company had a loss of $5.3 million, or 60 cents per share, in the quarter, compared with a loss of $4.1 million, or $12.99 per share, during the same period a year ago.
For the year, NephroGenex reported a loss of $16.8 million, or $2.15 per share, compared with a loss of $6.3 million, or $19.71 per share, in 2013.
The company’s larger loss came as it ramped up spending on research and development. R&D expenses increased from $1.5 million in 2013 to $11.3 million last year.
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The company ended the year with $28.7 million in cash. NephroGenex went public in February 2014, raising $37 million.
The company is developing Pyridorin, an experimental treatment aimed at slowing the progression of a chronic, degenerative disease of the kidneys caused by diabetes called diabetic nephropathy. About 6 million people suffer from the disease, according to NephroGenex.
NephroGenex has launched a Phase 3 trial for Pyridorin. The company is expanding the trial this year to encompass 150 sites by the end of the year, with completion of the study’s recruitment of patients by the first half of 2016.
NephroGenex shares closed Wednesday at $7.75, down 59 cents. The stock began trading at $12 in February 2014.