Registration of securities issued in business combination transactions

Summary of Significant Accounting Policies

Summary of Significant Accounting Policies
12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2019
Accounting Policies [Abstract]  
Summary of Significant Accounting Policies



Use of Estimates


The preparation of financial statements in conformity with GAAP requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities and disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities as of the date of the financial statements and the reported amounts of revenues and expenses during the reporting period. Actual results could differ from those estimates and such differences may be material to the financial statements. The more significant estimates and assumptions by management include among others; the valuation allowance of deferred tax assets resulting from net operating losses and the valuation of options on the Company’s common stock.


Cash and Cash Equivalents


Cash consists of amounts held in financial institutions and consists of immediately available fund balances. The funds are maintained at stable financial institutions, generally at amounts in excess of federally insured limits. Cash equivalents include money market funds and held-to-maturity securities with a maturity date of 90 days or less. As of December 31, 2019, cash and cash equivalents consisted of bank deposits, cash and investments in money market funds.


Investment in Marketable Securities


Investment in marketable securities is held in a custodial account at a financial institution and managed by the Company’s capital advisors based on the Company’s investment guidelines. All of the Company’s investments in marketable securities are classified as available-for-sale debt securities and are carried at fair value. Interest on these securities, as well as the amortization of discounts and premiums, is included in interest income in the Statements of Operations and comprehensive loss. The unrealized gains and losses on these securities are excluded from earnings and reported in other comprehensive loss until realized, except when it considers declines in value to be other than temporary. Other than temporary impairment losses related to credit losses are considered to be realized losses. When available-for-sale debt securities are sold, the cost of the securities is specifically identified and is used to determine the realized gain or loss. Securities classified as current assets have maturity dates of less than or equal to one year from the balance sheet date.


Property and Equipment


Property and equipment are recorded at cost and depreciated over their estimated useful lives using the straight-line method (see Note 4). Upon retirement or sale, the cost of assets disposed of and the related accumulated depreciation are removed from the accounts and any resulting gain or loss is credited or charged to income. Maintenance and repairs are charged to expense as incurred while expenditures for refurbishments and improvements that significantly add to the productive capacity or extend the useful life of an asset are capitalized.


Impairment of Long-Lived Assets


The Company periodically assesses the impairment of long-lived assets in accordance with Accounting Standards Codification (“ASC”) Topic 360, Property Plant and Equipment. When indicators of impairment are present, the Company evaluates the carrying value of these assets in relation to the operating performance of the business and future undiscounted cash flows expected to result from the use of these assets. No such impairments have been recognized during the years ended December 31, 2019 or 2018.


Clinical Trial and Pre-Clinical Study Accruals


The Company makes estimates of accrued expenses as of each balance sheet date in its financial statements based on the facts and circumstances known to it at that time. Accrued expenses for pre-clinical studies and clinical trials are based on estimates of costs incurred and fees that may be associated with services provided by contract research organizations, clinical trial investigational sites, and other related vendors. Payments under certain contracts with such parties depend on factors such as successful enrollment of patients, site initiation and the completion of milestones. In accruing service fees, management estimates the time period over which services will be performed and the level of effort to be expended in each period. If possible, the Company obtains information regarding unbilled services directly from these service providers. However, the Company may be required to estimate these services based on other information available to it. If the Company underestimates or overestimates the activity or fees associated with a study or service at a given point in time, adjustments to research and development expenses may be necessary in future periods. Historically, estimated accrued liabilities have approximated actual expense incurred. Subsequent changes in estimates may result in a material change in the Company’s accruals.


Research and Development


The Company expenses the cost of research and development as incurred. Research and development expenses comprise costs incurred in performing research and development activities, including clinical trial costs, manufacturing costs for both clinical and pre-clinical materials as well as other contracted services, license fees, and other external costs. Nonrefundable advance payments for goods and services that will be used in future research and development activities are expensed when the activity is performed or when the goods have been received, rather than when payment is made, in accordance with ASC Topic 730, Research and Development.


Patent Costs


The Company has no historical data to support a probable future economic benefit for the arising patent applications, filing and prosecution costs. Therefore, patent costs are expensed as incurred. Should the Company experience a legal cost to defend a patent in the future, that cost would be capitalized only when it is part of the cost of retaining and obtaining the future economic benefit of the patent. Costs related to an unsuccessful outcome would be expensed.


Stock-based Compensation


Stock-based compensation cost for stock awards issued to employees, members of the Company’s board of directors and non-employees, is measured at the grant date based on the fair value of the award and is recognized as expense over the required service period, which is generally equal to the vesting period. Stock-based compensation is recognized only for those awards that are ultimately expected to vest. Common stock, stock options or warrants issued to non-employees, including consultants and members of the Company’s Scientific Advisory Board as consideration for goods or services received by the Company, are accounted for based on the fair value of the equity instruments issued unless the fair value consideration received can be more reliably measured. The fair value of stock options is determined using the Black-Scholes option-pricing model. The fair value of any options issued to non-employees is recorded as expense over the vesting period. See Note 8 for further information.


Fair Value Measurements


The fair value of the Company’s financial instruments reflects the amounts that it estimates it would receive in connection with the sale of an asset or pay in connection with the transfer of a liability in an orderly transaction between market participants at the measurement date (exit price). The Company discloses and recognizes the fair value of its assets and liabilities using a hierarchy that prioritizes the inputs to valuation techniques used to measure fair value. The hierarchy gives the highest priority to valuations based upon unadjusted quoted prices in active markets for identical assets or liabilities (Level 1 measurements) and the lowest priority to valuations based upon unobservable inputs that are significant to the valuation (Level 3 measurements). The guidance establishes three levels of the fair value hierarchy as follows:


Level 1 - Inputs that reflect unadjusted quoted prices in active markets for identical assets or liabilities that we have the ability to access at the measurement date;


Level 2 - Inputs other than quoted prices that are observable for the assets or liability either directly or indirectly, including inputs in markets that are not considered to be active;


Level 3 - Inputs that are unobservable.


Assets and liabilities measured at fair value are classified in their entirety based on the lowest level of input that is significant to the fair value measurement. The Company’s assessment of the significance of a particular input to the fair value measurement in its entirety requires management to make judgments and consider factors specific to the asset or liability.


The Company recognizes transfers between levels of the fair value hierarchy as of the end of the reporting period. There were no transfers within the hierarchy during the year ended December 31, 2019.


A summary of the assets and liabilities carried at fair value in accordance with the hierarchy defined above is as follows:


    Fair Value Measurements Using  
    Level 1     Level 2     Level 3     Total  
December 31, 2019                                
Money market fund   $ 1,552,115     $     $     $ 1,552,115  
Total assets   $ 1,552,115     $     $     $ 1,552,115  


    Fair Value Measurements Using  
    Level 1     Level 2     Level 3     Total  
December 31, 2018                                
Cash and money market fund   $ 2,353,825     $     $     $ 2,353,825  
Corporate debt securities           6,908,710             6,908,710  
Commercial paper           2,979,213             2,979,213  
Total assets   $ 2,353,825     $ 9,887,923     $     $ 12,241,748  


The Company uses a market approach for determining the fair value of all its Level 1 money market funds and marketable securities. To value its money market funds, the Company values the funds at $1 stable net asset value, which is the market pricing convention for identical assets that the Company has the ability to access.


The investments were classified as available-for-sale debt securities. At December 31, 2019, the balance in the Company’s accumulated other comprehensive loss was comprised primarily of activity related to the Company’s available-for-sale debt securities and some activity related to held-to-maturity debt securities. Realized gains and losses are included in earnings The Company had no available-for-sale or held-to-maturity debt securities as of December 31, 2019.


Convertible Preferred Stock


The Company follows authoritative accounting guidance to distinguish liabilities from equity when assessing the classification and measurement of preferred stock. Preferred shares subject to mandatory redemptions are considered liabilities and measured at fair value. Conditionally redeemable preferred shares are considered temporary equity. All other preferred shares are considered as stockholders’ equity.


Accounting for Income Taxes


Deferred tax assets and liabilities are recognized for the expected future consequences of events that have been reflected in the financial statements. Deferred tax assets and liabilities are determined based on the differences between the book and tax basis of assets and liabilities and operating loss carryforwards, using tax rates expected to be in effect for the years in which the differences are expected to reverse. Such differences arise primarily from stock-based compensation and net operating loss carryforwards. The Company records a valuation allowance to reduce deferred income tax assets when it is more likely than not that some portion or all of the deferred tax asset will not be realized. Prior to September 15, 2008, the Company was a limited liability company and the Company’s tax losses and credits generally flowed directly to the members.


Net Loss Per Share


The Company determines basic net loss per share and diluted net loss per share in accordance with the provisions of ASC 260, “Earnings per Share.” Basic net loss per share was calculated by dividing net loss by the weighted-average common shares outstanding during the period. Diluted net loss per share was calculated by dividing net loss by the weighted-average common shares outstanding during the period using the treasury stock method or the two-class method, whichever is more dilutive. The potentially dilutive stock options issued under the 2015 Stock Plan (described in Note 8), Series A, Series B and Series C Convertible Preferred Stock (described in Note 6) and warrants on the Company’s common stock (described in Notes 6 and 7) were not considered in the computation of diluted net loss per share because they would be anti-dilutive.


Comprehensive Income (Loss)


Comprehensive income (loss) is defined as the change in equity during a period from transactions and other events and circumstances from non-owner sources. The Company is required to record all components of comprehensive loss in the financial statements in the period in which they are recognized. Net income (loss) and other comprehensive loss, including foreign currency translation adjustments and unrealized gains and losses on investments are reported, net of their related tax effect, to arrive at a comprehensive loss. For the years ended December 31, 2019 and 2018, comprehensive loss comprised of unrealized losses on investments in available-for-sale debt securities and held-to-maturity debt securities.


Recent Accounting Pronouncements


In June 2016, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) issued Accounting Standards Update (“ASU”) No. 2016-13, Financial Instruments – Credit Losses (Topic 326): Measurement of Credit Losses on Financial Instruments, an amendment that modifies the measurement recognition of credit losses for most financial assets and certain other instruments. The amendment updates the guidance for measuring and recording credit losses on financial assets measured at amortized cost by replacing the “incurred loss” model with an “expected loss” model. Accordingly, these financial assets will be presented at the net amount expected to be collected. The amendment also requires that credit losses related to available-for-sale debt securities be recorded as an allowance through net income rather than reducing the carrying amount under the current, other-than-temporary-impairment model. The FASB also issued subsequent amendments to the initial guidance: ASU 2018-19, ASU 2019-04, and ASU 2019-05 (collectively, “Topic 326”). Topic 326 requires measurement and recognition of expected credit losses for financial assets held. The effective date and transition methodology for the amendments in Topic 326 are the same as in ASU 2016-13. The guidance is effective for public business entities that are SEC filers. The amendments in ASU No. 2016-13 are effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2019, including interim periods within those fiscal years. For all other public business entities, the amendments in this ASU are effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2020, including interim periods within those fiscal years. The Company does not expect the adoption of this guidance will have a material impact on its financial statements.


In August 2018, the FASB issued ASU No. 2018-13, “Fair Value Measurement (Topic 820): Disclosure Framework — Changes to the Disclosure Requirements for Fair Value Measurement”, an amendment to the accounting guidance on fair value measurements. The guidance modifies the disclosure requirements on fair value measurements, including the removal of disclosures of the amount of and reasons for transfers between Level 1 of the fair value hierarchy, the policy for timing of transfers between levels, and the valuation processes for Level 3 fair value measurements. The guidance also adds certain disclosure requirements related to Level 3 fair value measurements. The guidance is effective for fiscal years, and interim periods within those fiscal years, beginning after December 15, 2019. The Company does not expect the adoption of this guidance will have a material impact on its financial statements.


In December 2019, the FASB issued ASU No. 2019-12, “Income Taxes (Topic 740): Simplifying the Accounting for Income Taxes,” which is intended to simplify various aspects related to accounting for income taxes. The ASU 2019-12 removes certain exceptions to the general principles in Topic 740 and also clarifies and amends existing guidance to improve consistent application. The ASU 2019-12 is effective for the Company beginning after December 15, 2021. The Company is evaluating the impact of the adoption of ASU 2019-12 on its financial statements, but does not expect such adoption to have a material impact.


Other accounting standard updates effective after December 31, 2019 are not expected to have a material impact on the Company’s financial statements.


Recently Adopted Accounting Pronouncements


In February 2016, the FASB issued ASU No. 2016-02, Leases (Topic 842). Under this guidance, an entity is required to recognize right-of-use (“ROU”) assets and corresponding lease liabilities on its balance sheets and disclose key information about leasing arrangements. In July 2018, the FASB issued ASU No. 2018-11, Leases (Topic 842) Targeted Improvements, which provides for an alternative transition method by allowing companies to continue to use the legacy guidance in Topic 840, Leases, including its disclosure requirements, in the comparative periods presented in the year of adoption of the new leases standard and recognize a cumulative-effect adjustment to the opening balance of retained earnings in the period of adoption rather than the earliest period presented.


The Company elected the available package of practical expedients , but not the hindsight practical expedient, and adopted this guidance as of January 1, 2019.


The standard had a material impact on the Company’s balance sheets, but did not have an impact on its statements of operations and comprehensive loss. The most significant impact was the recognition of a ROU asset and lease liability for the Company’s sole operating lease—the Company had no finance leases. Adoption of the standard did not require the Company to restate previously reported results as it elected to apply a modified retrospective approach at the beginning of the period of adoption rather than at the beginning of the earliest comparative period presented.


In June 2018, the FASB issued ASU No. 2018-07, Improvements to Nonemployee Share-Based Payment Accounting, which expands the scope of Topic 718 Compensation—Stock Compensation, to include share-based payments issued to nonemployees for goods or services. Consequently, the accounting for share-based payments to nonemployees and employees will be substantially aligned. ASU No. 2018-07 supersedes Subtopic 505-50 Equity—Equity-Based Payments to Non-Employees. The amendments implemented by ASU No. 2018-07 are effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2018, including interim periods within that fiscal year. The Company adopted ASU 2018-07 on January 1, 2019 and it did not have a material effect on its results of operations, financial position or cash flows.