Risk Factors Dashboard

Once a year, publicly traded companies issue a comprehensive report of their business, called a 10-K. A component mandated in the 10-K is the ‘Risk Factors’ section, where companies disclose any major potential risks that they may face. This dashboard highlights all major changes and additions in new 10K reports, allowing investors to quickly identify new potential risks and opportunities.

Risk Factors - QLGN

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Item 1A. Risk Factors

An investment in our common stock involves risks. You should carefully consider the risks described below, together with all of the other information included in this Annual Report, as well as in our other filings with the SEC, in evaluating our business. If any of the following risks actually occur, our business, financial condition, operating results and future prospects could be materially and adversely affected. In that case, the trading price of our common stock may decline and you might lose all or part of your investment. The risks described below, which are the risks we judge (rightly or wrongly) to be the most significant to investors, are not the only ones we face. Additional risks that we currently do not judge to be among the “most significant” may also impair our business, financial condition, operating results and prospects.

Certain statements below are forward-looking statements. For additional information, see the section of this Annual Report under the caption “Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements.”

Risks Related to Our Business Generally

Our business strategy is high-risk

We are focusing our resources and efforts on development of drug product candidates, which requires extensive cash needs for research and development activities. This is a high-risk strategy because there is no assurance that that our cash resources will be adequate to develop our product candidates, that our product candidates will ever be proven to be safe and effective or that any products will ever become commercially viable. This makes our stock an unsuitable investment for many investors. This may make our stock an unsuitable investment for many investors.

We do not currently have enough working capital to execute our strategic plan.

We have suffered recurring losses from operations, and we are now essentially a non-revenue company. We will need capital to maintain our operations and to support our intended development of our therapeutics business. Future financings will be necessary in order for us to survive as a going concern and to properly execute our strategic plan. However, there can be no assurance that such future financings will be available to us (or, if they are, that they can be consummated on desirable terms).

We may, in the short and long-term, seek to raise capital through the issuance of equity securities or through other financing sources. To the extent that we seek to raise additional funds by issuing equity or equity-linked securities, our stockholders may (as has already occurred several times) experience significant dilution. To the extent that we seek to raise additional funds by issuing equity securities, our stockholders may experience significant dilution. Any debt financing, if available, may include financial and other covenants that could restrict our use of the proceeds from such financing or impose other business and financial restrictions on us. In addition, we may consider alternative approaches such as licensing, joint venture, or partnership arrangements to provide short term or long term capital. Additional funding may not be available to us on acceptable terms, or at all. In addition, any future financing (depending on the terms and conditions) may be subject to the approval of Alpha, a related party and the holder of our 8% Senior Convertible Debenture and of our 8% Convertible Debenture (together, the “Debentures”), and/or trigger certain adjustments to the conversion prices of the Debentures or to the exercise prices of warrants held by Alpha and/or by other persons. See Part II, Item 7 “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” for additional details regarding the Debentures.

Servicing our debt will require a significant amount of cash, and we do not expect to have sufficient cash flow from our business to pay this debt.

Our ability to make payments to Alpha of principal or interest on the Debentures or to make any potential prepayments for the Debentures, to the extent applicable, depends on our future performance, which is subject to economic, financial, competitive and other factors beyond our control. Our cash resources currently on hand, plus any anticipated near-term cash flow from operations or dispositions, would not be sufficient to service our indebtedness and/or to make necessary expenditures.

In December 2022, we entered into a Securities Purchase Agreement with Alpha and in exchange for $3,000,000 in cash (less $50,000 for expense reimbursement) issued to Alpha our 8% Senior Convertible Debenture with an original face amount of $3,300,000 due on December 22, 2025 (the “2022 Debenture”), plus 2,500,000 common stock warrants exercisable (from June 22, 2023 through June 22, 2028) at $1.65 per share. Commencing June 1, 2023 and continuing on the first day of each month thereafter until the earlier of (i) December 22, 2025 and (ii) the full redemption of the 2022 Debenture (each such date, a “Monthly Redemption Date”), we must redeem $110,000 plus accrued but unpaid interest, liquidated damages and any amounts then owing under the 2022 Debenture (the “Monthly Redemption Amount”). The Monthly Redemption Amount must be paid in cash; provided that after the first two monthly redemptions, we may (if the Equity Conditions, as defined in the 2022 Debenture, are then satisfied or have been waived) elect to pay all or a portion of a Monthly Redemption Amount in shares of our common stock, based on a conversion price equal to the lesser of (i) the then applicable conversion price of the 2022 Debenture and (ii) 85% of the average of the VWAPs (as defined in the 2022 Debenture) for the five consecutive trading days ending on the trading day that is immediately prior to the applicable Monthly Redemption Date.

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The 2022 Debenture accrues interest at the rate of 8% per annum, which began accruing on December 1, 2023, and will be payable on a quarterly basis. Interest may be paid in cash or shares of common stock or a combination thereof at our option; provided that the Equity Conditions have been satisfied.

Alpha has waived the Equity Conditions for certain Monthly Redemption Amounts, but Alpha is not required to continue such waivers beyond May 2024. For the foreseeable future, we do not expect to be able to satisfy the Equity Conditions; as a result, where there is no waiver of the Equity Conditions we would not have the opportunity to make 2022 Debenture payments in the form of stock rather than in the form of cash, even for types of payments for which payment in the form of stock would have been allowed.

The 2022 Debenture is convertible into our common stock at any time at the holder’s option; the conversion price was originally $1.32 but pursuant to a Securities Purchase Agreement amendment in December 2023 it was reduced to $0.73 and then in February 2024 it was adjusted downward to $0.26 per share by virtue of the operation of a “ratchet” antidilution provision. (The exercise price of the warrants issued with the 2022 Debenture was originally $1.65 but pursuant to a Securities Purchase Agreement amendment in December 2023 it was reduced to $0.73 and then in February 2024 it was adjusted downward to $0.26 per share by virtue of the operation of a “ratchet” antidilution provision.)

Other than the Monthly Redemption Amounts, the 2022 Debenture does not call for scheduled payments of principal before the scheduled maturity date.

Both the 2022 Debenture and the accompanying warrants provide for “ratchet” antidilution adjustments to their conversion price and exercise price.

Both the 2022 Debenture and the accompanying warrants include a beneficial ownership blocker of 9.99%, which may only be waived by Alpha upon 61 days’ notice to the Company.

We granted Alpha resale registration rights for the common shares underlying the 2022 Debenture and the accompanying warrants.

The December 2023 amendment of the 2022 Debenture conversion price (and the accompanying warrants’ exercise price) to be $0.73 per share resulted in the 2022 Debenture’s then current $1,528,922 principal amount thereof becoming convertible into 2,094,414 shares of Company common stock (as opposed to the 1,158,274 shares into which such outstanding principal amount was convertible pre-adjustment). Also, the December 2023 amendment triggered a “ratchet” antidilution adjustment in the Company’s outstanding “exploding” “Series C Warrants,” resulting in such Series C Warrants becoming exercisable for 455,623 common shares (at an exercise price of $0.73 per share), as opposed to the 251,971 common shares into which such outstanding Series C Warrants would have been exercisable (at $1.32 per share) pre-adjustment. Finally, the $0.73 price triggered a “ratchet” antidilution adjustment in the exercise price of other outstanding Company common stock warrants, including 7,048 warrants held by Alpha and 67,620 warrants held by other persons, which were previously exercisable at $1.32 per share.

In February 2024, we entered into a Securities Purchase Agreement with Alpha and in exchange for $500,000 in cash (less $25,000 for expense reimbursement) issued to Alpha an 8% Convertible Debenture with a face amount of $550,000 due on December 31, 2024 (the “2024 Debenture”), plus 900,016 5-year common stock warrants exercisable at $0.26 per share. In addition, per this Securities Purchase Agreement Alpha obtained an option to purchase additional 8% Convertible Debentures, of like tenor, with face amounts of up to an aggregate of $1,100,000 (and with a proportional number of accompanying common stock warrants of like tenor, up to a total of 1,800,032 additional warrants), which would (if and when Alpha exercises such option) provide us up to an additional $1.0 million in cash proceeds (less expense reimbursement, and not including any possible cash proceeds from any future exercise of the additional warrants). This option is valid through July 1, 2024.

The 2024 Debenture has a maturity date of December 31, 2024 and is convertible, at any time, and from time to time, at Alpha’s option, into shares of our common stock, at $0.6111 per share. The 2024 Debenture does not call for scheduled payments of principal or interest before the scheduled maturity date. Interest on the 2024 Debenture accrues on its outstanding principal balance at the rate of 8% per annum.

Both the 2024 Debenture and the accompanying warrants provide for “ratchet” antidilution adjustments to the Conversion Price and Exercise Price.

Both the 2024 Debenture and the accompanying warrants include a beneficial ownership blocker of 9.99%, which may only be waived by Alpha upon 61 days’ notice to the Company.

We granted Alpha “piggyback” registration rights for the common shares underlying the 2024 Debenture and the accompanying warrants.

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The $0.26 exercise price of the warrants issued with the 2024 Debenture triggered a “ratchet” antidilution adjustment in the 2022 Debenture, resulting in the then current $1,198,922 principal amount thereof becoming convertible into 4,611,238 shares of Company common stock (as opposed to the 1,642,359 shares into which such outstanding principal amount were convertible pre-adjustment). Also, the $0.26 exercise price of the warrants issued with the 2024 Debenture triggered a “ratchet” antidilution adjustment in the Company’s outstanding “exploding” “Series C Warrants,” resulting in such Series C Warrants becoming exercisable for 1,279,261 common shares (at an exercise price of $0.26 per share), as opposed to the 455,623 common shares into which such outstanding Series C Warrants would have been exercisable (at $0.73 per share) pre-adjustment. Finally, the $0.26 exercise price of the Warrant would trigger a “ratchet” antidilution adjustment in the exercise price of other outstanding Company common stock warrants, including 2,507,048 warrants held by Alpha and 67,620 warrants held by other persons, all of which were previously exercisable at $0.73 per share.

If we continue to lack cash resources sufficient to service our indebtedness, we may be required to adopt one or more alternatives, such as selling assets, restructuring debt or issuing additional equity, equity-linked or debt instruments on terms that may be onerous or highly dilutive. Our ability to refinance our indebtedness will depend on the capital markets and our financial condition at such time. If we are unable to engage in any of these activities or engage in these activities on desirable terms, we may be unable to meet our debt obligations, which would materially and adversely impact our business, financial condition and operating results or even put us out of business.

Risks Related to Our Product Pipeline

Our product candidates are still in the early stages of development. Although we have begun Phase 1a clinical trials for QN-302, we might be unable to obtain further regulatory approval for QN-302 or any other drug candidate. We may never obtain marketing approval for any of our drug candidates. We may never obtain approval for any of our drug candidates or STARS.

We are still early in our Pan-RAS development efforts and have not yet sought approval for, or begun enrollment, in any clinical trials evaluating Pan-RAS. There can be no assurance that any of our drug product candidates will achieve success in their clinical trials or obtain regulatory approval.

Our ability to generate revenues from our drug product candidates will depend on the successful development and eventual commercialization of such drug candidates. The success of these products will depend on several factors, including the following:

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Many of these factors are beyond our control, and it is possible that none of our drug candidates will ever obtain regulatory approval even if we expend substantial time and resources seeking such approval. If we do not achieve one or more of these factors in a timely manner or at all, we could experience significant delays or an inability to successfully commercialize our drug candidates. For example, our business could be harmed if results of the clinical trials of QN-302, Pan-RAS or any other drug candidates vary adversely from our expectations. For example, our business could be harmed if results of the clinical trials of QN-302, QN-247, RAS-F, any other drug candidates or STARS vary adversely from our expectations.

Drug development involves a lengthy and expensive process. We may incur additional costs or experience delays in completing, or ultimately be unable to complete, the development and commercialization of our drug product candidates. We may incur additional costs or experience delays in completing, or ultimately be unable to complete, the development and commercialization of QN-302, QN-247, RAS-F or STARS.

Most drug candidates fail, and taking a drug candidate from concept through clinical trials and regulatory approval is not easy or guaranteed. We are unable to predict when or if our drug candidates, will prove effective or safe in humans or will obtain marketing approval. We are unable to predict when or if our drug candidates or STARS, our therapeutic medical device concept, will prove effective or safe in humans or will obtain marketing approval. Before obtaining marketing approval from regulatory authorities for the sale of these products, we must complete preclinical development and then conduct extensive clinical trials to demonstrate the safety and efficacy of these products for humans. Clinical testing is expensive, difficult to design and implement, can take many years to complete and is uncertain as to the outcome. A failure of one or more clinical trials can occur at any stage of testing. The outcome of preclinical testing and early clinical trials may not be predictive of the success of later clinical trials, and interim or preliminary results of a clinical trial do not necessarily predict final results.

We may experience numerous unforeseen events that could delay or prevent our ability to obtain marketing approval or commercialize our drug candidates, including:

Our product development costs will increase if we experience delays in preclinical studies or clinical trials or in obtaining marketing approvals. We do not know whether any of our planned preclinical studies or clinical trials will begin on a timely basis or at all, will need to be restructured or will be completed on schedule, or at all. For example, the FDA may place a partial or full clinical hold on any of our clinical trials for a variety of reasons.

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Significant preclinical or clinical trial delays also could shorten any periods during which we may have the exclusive right to commercialize our drug candidates or allow our competitors to bring products to market before we do and impair our ability to successfully commercialize our drug candidates.

Any delays in the commencement or completion, or termination or suspension, of our current clinical trial or our future clinical trials, if any, could result in increased costs to us, delay or limit our ability to generate revenue and adversely affect our commercial prospects.

Before we can initiate clinical trials of a drug candidate, we must submit the results of preclinical studies to the FDA along with other information as part of an IND application or similar regulatory filing, and the FDA (or corresponding foreign regulatory body) must approve the application.

Before obtaining marketing approval from the FDA for the sale of QN-302, Pan-RAS or any other future drug candidate, we must conduct extensive clinical studies to demonstrate safety and efficacy. Clinical testing is expensive, time consuming and uncertain as to outcome. The FDA may require us to conduct additional preclinical studies for any drug candidate before it allows us to initiate clinical trials under any IND application, which may lead to additional delays and increase the costs of our preclinical development programs. The FDA may require us to conduct additional preclinical studies for any drug candidate or STARS before it allows us to initiate clinical trials under any IND or IDE, which may lead to additional delays and increase the costs of our preclinical development programs.

Any delays in the commencement or completion of our ongoing, planned or future clinical trials could significantly increase our costs, slow down our development and approval process and jeopardize our ability to commence product sales and generate revenues. We do not know whether our planned trials will begin on time or at all, or be completed on schedule, if at all. The commencement and completion of clinical trials can be delayed for a number of reasons, including delays related to:

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We could also encounter delays if a clinical trial is suspended or terminated by us, by the IRBs/ECs of the institutions in which such trials are being conducted, by a Data Safety Monitoring Board for such trial or by the FDA. Such authorities may impose such a suspension or termination due to a number of factors, including failure to conduct the clinical trial in accordance with regulatory requirements or our clinical protocols, inspection of the clinical trial operations or trial site by the FDA resulting in the imposition of a clinical hold, unforeseen safety issues or adverse side effects, failure to demonstrate a benefit from using the product under investigation, changes in governmental regulations or administrative actions or lack of adequate funding to continue the clinical trial. In addition, changes in regulatory requirements and policies may occur, and we may need to amend clinical trial protocols to comply with these changes. Amendments may require us to resubmit our clinical trial protocols to IRBs/ECs for reexamination, which may impact the costs, timing or successful completion of a clinical trial.

If we experience delays or difficulties enrolling patients in our ongoing or planned clinical trials, our receipt of necessary regulatory approval could be delayed or prevented.

We may not be able to initiate or continue our ongoing or planned clinical trials for our products if we are unable to identify and enroll a sufficient number of eligible patients to participate in these trials as required by the FDA. In addition, some of our competitors may have ongoing clinical trials for products that would treat the same patients as QN-302 or Pan-RAS, and patients who would otherwise be eligible for our clinical trials may instead enroll in clinical trials of our competitors’ products. In addition, introduction of new drugs or devices to the marketplace may have an effect on the number of patients available or timing of the availability of the patients.

Our inability to enroll a sufficient number of patients for our clinical trials would result in significant delays or may require us to abandon one or more clinical trials altogether.

Adverse side effects or other safety risks associated with our drug product candidates could delay or preclude approval, cause us to suspend or discontinue any clinical trials or abandon further development, limit the commercial profile of an approved label, or result in significant negative consequences following regulatory approval, if any.

Results of our current and planned clinical trials could reveal a high and unacceptable severity and prevalence of side effects or unexpected characteristics. Undesirable side effects caused by our products could result in the delay, suspension or termination of clinical trials by us or the FDA for a number of reasons.

Moreover, if our products are associated with undesirable side effects in clinical trials or have characteristics that are unexpected, we may elect to abandon or limit their development to more narrow uses or subpopulations in which the undesirable side effects or other characteristics are less prevalent, less severe or more acceptable from a risk-benefit perspective, which may limit the commercial expectations for our products, if approved. We may also be required to modify our study plans based on findings in our clinical trials. Many drug candidates that initially showed promise in early stage testing have later been found to cause side effects that prevented further development. In addition, regulatory authorities may draw different conclusions or require additional testing to confirm these determinations.

It is possible that as we test our drug candidates in larger, longer and more extensive clinical trials, including with different dosing regimens, or as the use of our drug candidates becomes more widespread following any regulatory approval, illnesses, injuries, discomforts and other adverse events that were observed in earlier trials, as well as conditions that did not occur or went undetected in previous trials, will be reported by patients.

The development and commercialization of pharmaceutical and device products are subject to extensive regulation, and we may not obtain regulatory approvals for any product candidates, on a timely basis or at all.

The clinical development, manufacturing, labeling, packaging, storage, recordkeeping, advertising, promotion, export, import, marketing, distribution, adverse event reporting, including the submission of safety and other post-marketing information and reports, and other possible activities relating to drug product candidates such as ours are subject to extensive regulation.

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We rely, and intend to continue to rely, on third parties to conduct our preclinical studies and clinical trials and perform some of our research and preclinical studies. If these third parties do not satisfactorily carry out their contractual duties, fail to comply with applicable regulatory requirements or do not meet expected deadlines, our development programs may be delayed or subject to increased costs or we may be unable to obtain regulatory approval.

We are dependent on third parties to conduct our planned preclinical studies and clinical trials of our drug product candidates. The timing of the initiation and completion of these trials will therefore be partially controlled by such third parties and may result in delays to our development programs. We have relied heavily on UofL for preclinical studies related to Pan-RAS, and we expect to rely heavily on CROs and sponsored academic researchers for any further preclinical studies. As to any clinical trials, we expect to rely on CROs, sponsored academic researchers, clinical investigators and/or consultants to play a significant role in the conduct of these trials and the subsequent collection and analysis of data. However, we will not be able to control all aspects of their activities. Nevertheless, we are responsible for ensuring that each clinical trial is conducted in accordance with the applicable protocol and legal, regulatory and scientific standards, including GCP, requirements, and our reliance on the CROs and other third parties does not relieve us of our regulatory responsibilities.

There is no guarantee that any such CROs, clinical trial investigators and/or other third parties on which we rely will devote adequate time and resources to our development activities or perform as contractually required. If any of these third parties fail to meet expected deadlines, adhere to our clinical protocols or meet regulatory requirements, otherwise perform in a substandard manner, or terminate their engagements with us, the timelines for our development programs may be extended or delayed or our development activities may be suspended or terminated. If one of our clinical trial site terminates for any reason, we may experience the loss of follow-up information on subjects enrolled in such clinical trial unless we are able to transfer those subjects to another qualified clinical trial site, which may be difficult or impossible. If a Qualigen clinical trial site terminates for any reason, we may experience the loss of follow-up information on subjects enrolled in such clinical trial unless we are able to transfer those subjects to another qualified clinical trial site, which may be difficult or impossible.

If these third parties do not successfully carry out their contractual duties, meet expected deadlines or conduct clinical trials in accordance with regulatory requirements or our stated protocols, we will not be able to obtain, or may be delayed in obtaining, regulatory approvals for our drug product candidates and will not be able to, or may be delayed in our efforts to, successfully commercialize our products.

Manufacturing pharmaceutical products is complex and subject to product loss for a variety of reasons. We contract with third parties for the manufacture of our product candidates for preclinical testing and clinical trials and expect to continue to do so for commercialization. This reliance on third parties increases the risk that we will not have sufficient quantities of our product candidates or such quantities at an acceptable cost or quality, which could delay, prevent or impair our development or commercialization efforts.

We rely, and expect to continue to rely, on third parties for the manufacture of our products for preclinical and any clinical testing, as well as for future commercial manufacture if any of our product candidates obtain regulatory approval. This reliance on third parties increases the risk that we will not have sufficient quantities of our product candidates or such quantities at an acceptable cost or quality, which could delay, prevent or impair our development or commercialization efforts.

We may be unable to establish any agreements with third-party manufacturers or to do so on favorable terms. Even if we are able to establish agreements with third-party manufacturers, reliance on third-party manufacturers entails additional risks, including:

We do not have manufacturing agreements in place for any of our current drug candidates. We acquire many key materials on a purchase order basis. As a result, we do not have long-term committed arrangements with respect to our product candidates and other materials. If we obtain regulatory approval for any of our product candidates, we will need to establish an agreement for commercial manufacture with a third-party.

Any performance failure on the part of our existing or future manufacturers could delay clinical development or regulatory approval. We do not currently have arrangements in place for redundant supply or a second source for bulk drug substance for QN-302 or Pan-RAS.

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We will need to seek and enter into out-licenses or collaborations with third parties for the development and commercialization of our products, resulting in a limitation of our upside potential.

We expect that we will need third-party out-licensees or collaborators for the development and commercialization of our products.

Our likely collaborators for any collaboration arrangements include large and mid-size pharmaceutical companies, regional and national pharmaceutical companies and biotechnology companies. We face significant competition in seeking appropriate collaborators. Our ability to reach a definitive agreement for a collaboration will depend, among other things, upon our assessment of the collaborator’s resources and expertise, the terms and conditions of the proposed collaboration and the proposed collaborator’s evaluation of a number of factors.

If we do enter into any such arrangements with any third parties, we will likely have limited control over the amount and timing of resources that such collaborators dedicate to the development or commercialization of our products. Our ability to generate revenues from these arrangements will depend on our collaborators’ abilities and efforts to successfully perform the functions assigned to them in these arrangements.

Any out-license or collaboration will necessarily result in a sharing of economics with the out licensee or collaborator, which might otherwise have been captured by us directly.

Risks Related to our Intellectual Property

If we are unable to obtain and maintain sufficient patent protection for our therapeutic product candidates, or if the scope of the patent protection is not sufficiently broad, third parties, including our competitors, could develop and commercialize products similar or identical to ours, and our ability to commercialize our product candidates successfully may be adversely affected.

Our commercial success depends significantly on our ability to protect our proprietary (and exclusively in-licensed) product candidates or technologies that we believe are important to our business, including pursuing, obtaining and maintaining patent protection in the United States and other countries intended to cover the composition of matter of our product candidates, the methods of use, related technologies, and other inventions that are important to our business. In addition to patent protection, we also rely on trade secrets to protect aspects of our business that are not amenable to, or that we do not consider appropriate for, patent protection. If we do not adequately pursue, obtain, maintain, protect or enforce our intellectual property, third parties, including our competitors and/or collaborators, may be able to erode or negate any competitive advantage we may have, which could harm our business and ability to achieve profitability.

Moreover, depending on the terms of any license agreements to which we may become a party, we may not have the right to control the preparation, filing, and prosecution of patent applications, or to maintain or defend the patents, covering technology licensed from third parties. Therefore, these patents and patent applications may not be prosecuted and enforced in a manner consistent with the best interests of our business.

We cannot offer any assurances about which, if any, patents will issue, the breadth of any such patents, whether any issued patents will be found invalid and unenforceable or will be threatened by third parties or whether any issued patents will effectively prevent others from commercializing competing technologies and product candidates. Our licensors have not filed patent applications in every jurisdiction, and some filings are only pending in the United States. We have not filed patent applications in every jurisdiction, and some filings are only pending in the United States.

Moreover, because the issuance of a patent, although presumptive, is not conclusive as to its inventorship, scope, validity or enforceability, our licensors’ patents or pending patent applications may be challenged in the courts or patent offices in the United States and abroad. Such challenges may result in loss of exclusivity or in the patent claims being narrowed, invalidated or held unenforceable, in whole or in part, which could limit our ability to stop others from using or commercializing similar or identical products and technologies or limit the duration of the patent protection of our products and technologies. Such challenges also may result in substantial cost and require significant time from our scientists and management, even if the eventual outcome is favorable to us.

Our licensors’ pending and future patent applications may not result in patents being issued that protect our product candidates and technologies, in whole or in part, or that effectively prevent others from commercializing competitive products and technologies. Even if the patent applications issue as patents, they may not issue in a form that will provide us with any meaningful protection, prevent competitors or other third parties from competing with us or otherwise provide us with any competitive advantage. Our competitors and other third parties may be able to circumvent our licensors’ patents by developing similar or alternative products or technologies in a non-infringing manner. Our competitors and other third parties may be able to circumvent our patents by developing similar or alternative technologies or products in a non-infringing manner. Our competitors and other third parties may also seek approval to market their own products and technologies similar to or otherwise competitive with our products and technologies. Our competitors and other third parties may also seek approval to market their own products similar to or otherwise competitive with our products. Alternatively, our competitors or other third parties may seek to market generic versions of any approved products by submitting abbreviated NDAs to the FDA during which process they may claim that patents owned by us are invalid, unenforceable or not infringed. In these circumstances, we may need to defend or assert our licensors’ patents, or both, including by filing lawsuits alleging patent infringement. In these circumstances, we may need to defend or assert our patents, or both, including by filing lawsuits alleging patent infringement. In any of these types of proceedings, a court or other agency with jurisdiction may find our licensors’ patents invalid or unenforceable, or that our competitors are competing in a non-infringing manner. In any of these types of proceedings, a court or other agency with jurisdiction may find our patents invalid or unenforceable, or that our competitors are competing in a non-infringing manner. Thus, even if we have in-licensed valid and enforceable patents, these patents still may not provide protection against competing products or processes sufficient to achieve our business objectives. Thus, even if we have valid and enforceable patents, these patents still may not provide protection against competing products or processes sufficient to achieve our business objectives.

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The term of our in-licensed patents may be inadequate to protect our competitive position on our products.

Given the amount of time required for the development, testing and regulatory review of drug candidates, our in-licensed patents protecting such candidates might expire before or shortly after such candidates are commercialized. In such an event (and if we are unable to obtain patent term extension or the term of any such extension is less than we request), our competitors and other third parties may be able to obtain approval of competing products following patent expiration and take advantage of our investment in development and clinical trials by referencing our clinical and preclinical data and launch their product earlier than might otherwise be the case. Generic competition usually results in serious price erosion for the original drug brand.

Risks Related to Employee Matters, Potential Dilution, Stock Price Variability and Other Risks Related to Our Business

Our future success depends on our ability to retain key employees and to attract, retain and motivate qualified personnel.

We are highly dependent on Michael Poirier, our Chief Executive Officer and Chairman, and Christopher Lotz, our Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. In addition, the rest of our team has been sharply reduced due to rightsizing, voluntary departures and the disposition of our Qualigen, Inc. diagnostics-products subsidiary – we currently have only two other employees.

Our ability to compete depends upon our ability to attract, retain and motivate highly skilled and experienced personnel with scientific, clinical, regulatory, manufacturing and management skills and experience. We may not be able to attract or retain qualified personnel in the future. Many of the companies against which we compete have greater financial and other resources, different risk profiles and a longer history in the industry than we do. Our competitors may provide higher compensation, more diverse opportunities and/or better opportunities for career advancement. Any or all of these competing factors (as well as our own limited resources) may limit our ability to attract and retain high quality personnel, which could negatively affect our ability to successfully develop and commercialize our product candidates and to grow our business and operations as currently contemplated. Any or all of these competing factors may limit our ability to continue to attract and retain high quality personnel, which could negatively affect our ability to successfully develop and commercialize our product candidates and to grow our business and operations as currently contemplated.

We will need to rebuild our development and regulatory teams.

Due to rightsizing, voluntary departures and the disposition of Qualigen, Inc. and our former FastPack®products business, we currently have only four employees. Although we outsource many drug development functions and may choose to continue to do so in the future, we expect that (resources allowing) to recruit and retain more employees in all areas, and particularly in the areas of clinical development, clinical operations, and regulatory affairs (and maybe, longer-term, in areas such as manufacturing, sales, marketing and distribution). Although we outsource many drug development functions and may choose to continue to do so in the future, we expect to experience growth in the number of employees and the scope of our operations, particularly in the areas of clinical development, clinical operations, manufacturing, and regulatory affairs as we progress QN-302, QN-247, RAS-F and STARS through the clinic and develop additional product candidates. We will also need to implement and improve our managerial, operational and financial systems, and obtain stage-appropriate facilities. We do not currently have the cash resources needed for any of the above.

We currently rely, and for the foreseeable future will continue to rely, in substantial part, on certain third-party contract research organizations and consultants to provide certain services, including assuming substantial responsibilities for the conduct of our clinical trials. We cannot assure that the services of such third-party contract research organizations and consultants will continue to be available to us on a timely basis when needed, or that we can find qualified replacements. We cannot assure that the services of such third-party contract research organizations, sponsored academic researchers, advisors and consultants will continue to be available to us on a timely basis when needed, or that we can find qualified replacements. In addition, if we are unable to effectively manage our outsourced activities or if the quality or accuracy of the services provided by our vendors or consultants is compromised for any reason, our clinical trials may be extended, delayed or terminated. In addition, if we are unable to effectively manage our outsourced activities or if the quality or accuracy of the services provided by our vendors or consultants is compromised for any reason, our clinical trials may be extended, delayed or terminated, and we may not be able to obtain regulatory approval of QN-302, QN-247, RAS-F, STARS or any of our other current or future product candidates or otherwise advance our business. We cannot assure that we will be able to properly manage our existing vendors or consultants or find other competent outside vendors and consultants on economically reasonable terms, or at all.

We may engage in strategic transactions that could impact liquidity, increase expenses and present significant distractions to management.