Realm Therapeutics shares crater — again — on a failed PhII atopic dermatitis study

A little over a year after Realm Therapeutics put together a transatlantic syndicate to back a $26 million venture round, the biotech has been watching its stock $RLM crater after a Phase II failure for their lead therapy. And this is their second Phase II flop in 5 months.

Alex Martin

Researchers for the Malvern, PA-based biotech had hoped to get some solid supporting data from their mid-stage study of PR022 in atopic dermatitis — planning to recruit 120 trial subjects to test the topical gel — but they couldn’t see any improvement over the control arm.

The company’s shares immediately plunged, losing about half their value.

This was the second big setback of the year for the biotech. In March, Realm was forced to scrap its Phase II program for  PR013, a topical ophthalmic solution for the treatment of allergic conjunctivitis, after that therapy also failed to perform in humans.

OrbiMed, BVF Partners, RA Capital Management, Abingworth BioEquities Master Fund and Polar Capital all contributed to the last round for Realm, which was initially called PuriCore ahead of a reorganization in 2016.

Realm had about $24 million in cash and equivalents at the end of the first half. The company is also working on RLM023 for acne as well as another psoriasis study for PR022.

CEO Alex Martin had this to say in a prepared statement:

We are conducting a full review to determine whether there is a path forward for our proprietary technology in atopic dermatitis, and to evaluate the implications for our acne and psoriasis programs. We will provide an update on our plans in September.

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