Rhythm Pharma IPO goes over the top, snags $120M in latest sign the biotech window is wide open

Rhythm Pharmaceuticals $RYTM became the latest biotech to tap into a buoyant market, raising $120 million in an IPO that went over the range at $17 a share. And they can add substantially to that if the underwriters pick up another million shares on the table.

The Boston-based biotech filed its S-1 just weeks ago, outlining its late-stage plans for POMC deficiency obesity and LepR deficiency obesity. The biotech posted some compelling but extremely limited data on its MC4R agonist setmelanotide — designated as a breakthrough therapy by the FDA — for the treatment of rare genetic disorders of obesity, with two patients to report on a year ago.

There are only about 50 known patients with POMC deficiency. And two of them were enrolled for their Phase II.

Both patients responded in dramatic fashion. The first lost 112.4 pounds over 42 weeks, after weighing in at 341.7 pounds. The second lost 45.2 pounds over 12 weeks, from a baseline weight of 336.9 pounds.

A snapshot of efficacy and a BTD from the agency isn’t always enough to pull off an IPO. But we’ve seen a string of successful offerings like this come through in the past few months, which no doubt will inspire more IPOs as biotechs start to crowd each other to make the leap while the window is open.

Rhythm got started back in 2008 with the help of some A-list investors, including: MPM Capital, New Enterprise Associates, Third Rock Ventures, Ipsen, Pfizer Venture Investments, OrbiMed and Deerfield Management. Late last year Allergan struck a deal to buy Motus Therapeutics, a subsidiary of Rhythm Holding which controlled its diabetic gastroparesis treatment relamorelin.

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Research Scientist - Immunology
Recursion Pharmaceuticals Salt Lake City, UT
Director of Operations
Atlas Venture Cambridge, MA

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