The biotech IPO feast flags as in­vestors lose their ap­petite for R&D risk

There was a time af­ter the 2008 crash that biotech IPOs were about as pop­u­lar as snow in March. But from 2013 through 2015 gen­er­al­ist in­vestors got over their fears and jumped in­to one of the hottest stock games on the plan­et. Funds chased each oth­er for huge re­turns. CEOs be­came overnight mil­lion­aires.

Now the mar­ket pen­du­lum has swung back as the bears pushed aside the bulls. But that doesn’t mean that the new ice age has be­gun, ei­ther.

With H1 com­ing to an end to­mor­row, Nas­daq has count­ed 14 biotech IPOs that col­lec­tive­ly raked in $878 mil­lion, a much re­duced fig­ure from the $4 bil­lion raised in 2015 from 42 biotech IPOs they tracked. And it was lit­tle com­pared to the 61 IPOs that raised $4.3 bil­lion dur­ing the go-go days of 2014.

That’s not too sur­pris­ing, giv­en the gale force winds that have been howl­ing in the biotech sec­tor over the last 6 months. A lot of good com­pa­nies have seen their stock prices fall by half. A hint of bad news now can evis­cer­ate stocks in sec­onds, and there are a host of com­pa­nies that are close to or in pen­ny stock ter­ri­to­ry.

What still draws a crowd on Wall Street? Cer­tain­ly gene edit­ing. If you look over the list of H1 IPOs Nas­daq of­fer­ered me, you’ll see that Ed­i­tas and In­tel­lia scored in the top ranks of new IPOs. That’s why CRISPR Ther­a­peu­tics has been set­ting the stage for an S-1 that’s al­most cer­tain­ly go­ing to shoot for the stars.

Chi­na’s BeiGene got the ball rolling with the biggest of­fer­ing of the year. But with more and more biotechs hang­ing back to wait for a sun­nier in­vest­ment cli­mate, it’s not un­usu­al to see plen­ty of dis­counts on share prices.

There are a cou­ple of biotech IPOs in the queue this week, Sy­ros Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals and Gem­phire Ther­a­peu­tics, which are to­geth­er hunt­ing about $100 mil­lion more.

The mu­sic hasn’t died in biotech, but it’s not near­ly as loud and ur­gent as the hit tunes from 2013-2015. — John Car­roll, fol­low me @John­Cendpts


H1 2016 IPOs

Sym­bol Com­pa­ny Name IPO Date Raise IPO Price
$SELB Se­lec­ta Bio­sciences 6/21/16 $70,000,000 $14.00
$MBRX Mol­e­culin Biotech, Inc. 6/2/16 $9,240,156 $6.00
$MRUS Merus N.V. 5/19/16 $55,000,000 $10.00
$PZRX PhaseRx, Inc. 5/18/16 $18,500,000 $5.00
$ON­SIU On­co­bi­o­log­ics, Inc. 5/13/16 $35,000,004 $6.00
$NT­LA In­tel­lia Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 5/6/16 $108,000,000 $18.00
$SBPH Spring Bank Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals, Inc. 5/6/16 $11,040,000 $12.00
$AGLE Ae­glea Bio­Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 4/7/16 $50,000,000 $10.00
$CRVS Corvus Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals, Inc. 3/23/16 $70,500,000 $15.00
$SNDX Syn­dax Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc 3/3/16 $52,800,000 $12.00
$AVXS AveX­is, Inc. 2/11/16 $95,000,000 $20.00
$PTI Pro­teosta­sis Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 2/11/16 $50,000,000 $8.00
$ED­IT Ed­i­tas Med­i­cine, Inc. 2/3/16 $94,400,000 $16.00
$BGNE BeiGene Ltd. Spon­sored ADR 2/3/16 $158,400,000 $24.00

2015 IPOs

 

Sym­bol Com­pa­ny Name IPO Date Raise IPO Price
$MESO Mesoblast Lim­it­ed Spon­sored ADR 11/13/15 $59,836,936 $8.00
$VY­GR Voy­ager Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 11/11/15 $70,000,000 $14.00
$OASM Oas­mia Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal AB ADR 10/23/15 $9,497,152 $4.06
$DMTX Di­men­sion Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 10/22/15 $65,000,000 $13.00
$SBBP Strong­bridge Bio­phar­ma plc 10/16/15 $25,000,000 $10.00
$CT­MX Cy­tomX Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 10/8/15 $80,000,004 $12.00
$MIRN Mir­na Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 10/1/15 $43,750,000 $7.00
$EDGE Edge Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 10/1/15 $80,466,661 $11.00
$RGNX RE­GENXBIO, Inc. 9/17/15 $138,600,000 $22.00
$BNTC Ben­itec Bio­phar­ma Lim­it­ed 8/18/15 $13,815,000 $9.21
$GBT Glob­al Blood Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 8/12/15 $120,000,000 $20.00
$AIMT Aim­mune Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 8/6/15 $160,000,000 $16.00
$NTEC In­tec Phar­ma Ltd 8/4/15 $30,150,000 $6.00
$VTVT vTv Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. Class A 7/30/15 $117,187,500 $15.00
$NK Nan­tK­west, Inc. 7/28/15 $207,200,000 $25.00
$DNAI ProN­Ai Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 7/16/15 $137,700,000 $17.00
$CHMA Chi­as­ma Inc. 7/16/15 $101,840,000 $16.00
$NTRA Nat­era Inc. 7/2/15 $180,000,000 $18.00
$MCRB Seres Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 6/26/15 $133,749,990 $18.00
$CATB Cataba­sis Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 6/25/15 $60,000,000 $12.00
$NVLS Ni­valis Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 6/17/15 $77,000,000 $14.00
$AX­ON Ax­o­vant Sci­ences Ltd. 6/11/15 $315,000,000 $15.00
$BITI Bi­otie Ther­a­pies Corp Spon­sored ADR 6/11/15 $55,969,900 $14.88
$GLPG Gala­pa­gos NV Spon­sored ADR 5/14/15 $210,103,750 $42.05
$LIFE aTyr Phar­ma, Inc. 5/7/15 $75,040,000 $14.00
$ADAP Adap­ti­m­mune Ther­a­peu­tics PLC 5/6/15 $191,250,000 $17.00
$CLCD CoLu­cid Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals, Inc. 5/6/15 $55,000,000 $10.00
$OPGN Op­Gen, Inc. 5/5/15 $17,071,500 $5.99
$BPMC Blue­print Med­i­cines Corp. 4/30/15 $146,625,012 $18.00
$VK­TX Viking Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 4/29/15 $24,000,000 $8.00
$CDTX Cidara Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 4/15/15 $76,800,000 $16.00
$ADRO Aduro BioTech, Inc. 4/15/15 $119,000,000 $17.00
$XBIT XBiotech, Inc. 4/15/15 $76,000,000 $19.00
$CLLS Cel­lec­tis SA Spon­sored ADR 3/25/15 $228,250,000 $41.50
$SMMT Sum­mit Ther­a­peu­tics PLC 3/4/15 $34,155,000 $9.90
$ITEK In­otek Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Cor­po­ra­tion 2/18/15 $40,002,000 $6.00
$NV­TA In­vi­tae Corp. 2/11/15 $101,600,000 $16.00
$NVET Nexvet Bio­phar­ma PLC 2/5/15 $40,000,000 $10.00
$ONCE Spark Ther­a­peu­tics, Inc. 1/30/15 $161,000,000 $23.00
$TCON TRA­CON Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals, Inc. 1/30/15 $36,000,000 $10.00
$AS­ND As­cendis Phar­ma A/S 1/28/15 $108,000,000 $18.00

2014 IPOs

Sym­bol Com­pa­ny Name IPO Date Raise IPO Price
$JUNO Juno Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 12/19/14 $264,550,008 $24.00
$BLCM Bel­licum Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc 12/18/14 $139,650,000 $19.00
$HS­GX His­to­gen­ics Corp. 12/3/14 $65,000,001 $11.00
$NEOT Neo­thet­ics, Inc. 11/20/14 $65,100,000 $14.00
$FGEN Fi­bro­Gen Inc. 11/14/14 $145,800,000 $18.00
$CHRS Co­herus Bio­Sciences Inc. 11/6/14 $85,000,050 $13.50
$XENE Xenon Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 11/5/14 $36,000,000 $9.00
$DB­VT DBV Tech­nolo­gies SA. (ADS) 10/22/14 $92,572,155 $21.64
$PRTO Pro­teon Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 10/22/14 $61,100,000 $10.00
$ATRA Atara Bio­ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 10/16/14 $55,000,000 $11.00
$FWP For­ward Phar­ma A/S (ADS) 10/15/14 $220,500,000 $21.00
$CALA Calithera Bio­sciences Inc. 10/2/14 $80,000,000 $10.00
$VBLT Vas­cu­lar Bio­gen­ics Ltd. 10/1/14 $40,000,002 $6.00
$VTAE Vi­tae Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 9/24/14 $55,000,000 $8.00
$PRQR Pro­QR Ther­a­peu­tics NV 9/18/14 $97,500,000 $13.00
$TKAI Tokai Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 9/17/14 $97,200,000 $15.00
$AFMD Af­fimed Ther­a­peu­tics BV 9/12/14 $56,000,000 $7.00
$OT­IC Oton­o­my Inc. 8/13/14 $100,000,000 $16.00
$TTOO T2 Biosys­tems Inc. 8/7/14 $57,200,000 $11.00
$LOXO Loxo On­col­o­gy Inc. 8/1/14 $68,399,994 $13.00
$MCUR Macro­cure Ltd. 7/31/14 $53,500,000 $10.00
$ORPN Bio Blast Phar­ma Ltd. 7/31/14 $35,200,000 $11.00
$AAVL Avalanche Biotech­nolo­gies Inc. 7/31/14 $102,000,000 $17.00
$IMDZ Im­mune De­sign Corp. 7/24/14 $60,000,000 $12.00
$PFNX Pfenex Inc. 7/24/14 $49,999,998 $6.00
$SAGE SAGE Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 7/18/14 $90,000,000 $18.00
$CD­NA CareDx Inc. 7/17/14 $40,000,000 $10.00
$GBIM GlobeIm­mune Inc. 7/2/14 $15,000,000 $10.00
$NERV Min­er­va Neu­ro­sciences Inc. 7/1/14 $32,727,270 $6.00
$KITE Kite Phar­ma Inc. 6/20/14 $127,500,000 $17.00
$ZFGN Zaf­gen Inc. 6/19/14 $96,000,000 $16.00
$ARDX ARDE­LYX INC. 6/19/14 $60,200,000 $14.00
$SGNL Sig­nal Ge­net­ics Inc. 6/18/14 $8,500,000 $10.00
$RDUS Ra­dius Health Inc. 6/6/14 $52,000,000 $8.00
$AL­DR Alder Bio­phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 5/8/14 $80,000,000 $10.00
$ALDX Aldeyra Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 5/2/14 $12,000,000 $8.00
$VTL Vi­tal Ther­a­pies Inc. 4/17/14 $54,000,000 $12.00
$CERU Cerulean Phar­ma Inc. 4/10/14 $59,500,000 $7.00
$ADMS Adamas Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 4/10/14 $48,000,000 $16.00
$AGTC Ap­plied Ge­net­ic Tech­nolo­gies Corp. 3/27/14 $50,000,004 $12.00
$VSAR Ver­sar­tis Inc. 3/21/14 $126,000,000 $21.00
$AK­BA Ake­bia Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 3/20/14 $100,000,001 $17.00
$GLMD Galmed Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Ltd. 3/13/14 $38,304,900 $13.50
$AQXP Aquinox Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 3/7/14 $46,200,000
$REPH Re­cro Phar­ma Inc. 3/7/14 $30,000,000 $8.00
$CNCE Con­cert Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 2/13/14 $84,000,000 $14.00
$EGRX Ea­gle Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 2/12/14 $50,250,000 $15.00
$FLXN Flex­ion Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 2/12/14 $65,000,000 $13.00
$NRX Nephro­Genex Inc. 2/11/14 $37,200,000 $12.00
$ARGS Ar­gos Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 2/7/14 $45,000,000 $8.00
$EBIO Eleven Bio­ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 2/6/14 $50,000,000 $10.00
$BIOC Bio­cept Inc. 2/5/14 $19,000,000 $10.00
$GN­CA Geno­cea Bio­sciences Inc. 2/5/14 $66,000,000 $12.00
$AS­PX Aus­pex Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 2/5/14 $84,000,000 $12.00
$QURE uniQure N.V. 2/5/14 $91,800,000 $17.00
$CARA Cara Ther­a­peu­tics Inc. 1/31/14 $55,000,000 $11.00
$TRVN Treve­na Inc. 1/31/14 $64,750,000 $7.00
$RARE Ul­tragenyx Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal Inc. 1/31/14 $120,967,749 $21.00
$CLDN Cel­ladon Corp. 1/30/14 $44,000,000 $8.00
$DR­NA Dicer­na Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Inc. 1/30/14 $90,000,000 $15.00
$GLYC Gly­coMimet­ics Inc. 1/20/14 $56,000,000 $8.00

UP­DAT­ED: Roche bags 'break­through' an­ti-fi­bro­sis drug in $1.4B biotech buy­out deal

Roche is snapping up a “breakthrough” anti-fibrotic drug in a $1.4 billion buyout.

The pharma giant announced Friday that it is acquiring Promedior, primarily to get its hands on PRM-151, a recombinant form of human pentraxin-2 (PTX-2) protein that has nailed down mid-stage clinical data on idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and demonstrating its potential for a range of fibrotic conditions.

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Amarin emerges from an ex­pert pan­el re­view with a clear en­dorse­ment for Vas­cepa and high odds of suc­cess when the FDA weighs in for­mal­ly

Several FDA experts who gathered Thursday to consider the landmark approval of Vascepa to reduce cardio events in an at-risk population voiced their unease about various aspects of the efficacy and safety data, or ultimately the population it should be used to treat. But the overwhelming belief that the data pointed to the drug’s benefit and clearly outweighed risks carried the day for Amarin.

The panel voted unanimously (16 to 0) to support the company’s positive data presentation — backing an OK for expanding the label to include reducing cardio risk. The vote points Amarin $AMRN down a short path to a formal decision by the FDA, with the odds heavily in its favor. Chances are the rest of the questions about the future of this drug will be hashed out in the label’s small print.

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No­var­tis spin­out’s first an­ti-ag­ing PhI­II is a flop, so now they’ll turn to Parkin­son’s chal­lenge as shares wilt

Novartis spinout resTORbio is grappling with the collapse of its lead clinical program this morning — an anti-aging R&D failure that will badly damage their rep in the field.

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No­var­tis scores its lat­est FDA OK — this time for a new sick­le cell dis­ease drug picked up in a $665M deal

Novartis’ decision to buy Oklahoma-based biotech Selexys 3 years ago for up to $665 million has paid off with an FDA approval today.

Blessed with the FDA’s breakthrough drug designation for a speedy review, the pharma giant has pinned down an approval for crizanlizumab, a new therapy designed to reduce the frequency of painful incidents of vaso-occlusive crises among sickle cell disease patients 16 or older.

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As­traZeneca gains EU nod for di­a­betes triple; Am­gen and Duke launch re­al-world PC­SK9 ob­ser­va­tion­al study

→ Weeks after winning EU approval to start marketing dapagliflozin as Forxiga, AstraZeneca has racked up another OK for a triplet combo involving the SGLT2 diabetes drug. Named Qtrilmet, the pill combines Forxiga with the DPP-4 inhibitor Onglyza (saxagliptin) and the bedrock drug metformin in a modified-release format. That 3-in-1 approach proved superior in reducing average blood glucose levels to a number of other dual combinations across 5 Phase III trials, including Forxiga plus metformin, Onglyza with metformin, or glimepiride with metformin.

Five drugs, in­clud­ing two No­var­tis ther­a­pies, win EMA en­dorse­ment

As is custom, an EMA panel on Friday issued its weekly recommendations on marketing applications submitted by drug developers. This week, the agency backed the use of five new therapies — including two Novartis drugs — but issued no negative reviews.

Novartis’ S1P drug for relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (MS) drug, Mayzent (known chemically as siponimod), which was approved by the FDA in March — has been given the nod by the EMA. The Swiss drugmaker already sells its other MS drug, Gilenya, in both regions.

Atom­wise's X-37 spin­out gets $14.5 mil­lion to launch AI dis­cov­ery ef­forts

The folks behind Atomwise’s spinout X-37 like to think in cosmological metaphors, and you can think of their AI drug development model as probes sent into space from a central station. That station just got $14.5 million in Series A funding from DCVC Bio, Alpha Intelligence Capital and Hemi Ventures to back those missions.

X-37 uses Atomwise’s AI platform to identify drug targets and – unlike the parent company, which largely sticks to computers  – bring those into a wet lab and preclinical testing.  In addition to AI professionals, it’s led in by part by drug developers from Velocity Pharmaceutical Development.

Ab­bott Lab­o­ra­to­ries CEO Miles White pass­es ba­ton down to suc­ces­sor; Lon­za CEO Marc Funk hits the ex­it

→ Abbott Laboratories has named a successor to CEO Miles White after he announced that he was stepping down in March after 21 years of service. Robert Ford, the company’s COO and president, will take the helm. Ford is known for his work in the $25 billion merger between St. Jude Medical into Abbott in January 2017. White will remain with the company as executive chairman of the board. 

→ After snapping up Novartis’ Swiss facility, Novartis Center of Excellence, in July, Lonza has announced that their CEO, Marc Funk, is hitting the exit for “personal reasons.” Funk has been the CEO of the company for less than a year — brought onto the company back in March. In the meantime, chairman Albert Baehny will serve as interim CEO. 

UCB adds on more pos­i­tive PhI­II da­ta for IL-17A/17F in­hibitor bimek­izum­ab, clear­ing a path to the FDA

A month after posting positive top-line data from their first Phase III trial of the IL-17A/17F inhibitor bimekizumab, Belgium’s UCB says they’ve added more upbeat results from their second late-stage test in moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis.

That leaves the company on track for regulatory submissions in the middle of next year, says CMO Iris Loew-Friedrich.
Their drug beat out a placebo on the co-primaries — a 90% improvement in PASI 90 (the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index) and Investigator Global Assessment (IGA) response of clear or almost clear (IGA 0/1) at week 16, compared to placebo. Investigators also boasted of hitting some key secondaries.
UCB is angling to enter an increasingly crowded market space.
In their first of 3 Phase III studies for bimekizumab, researchers touted top-line wins on statistically significant results on clearing plaque psoriasis, including a victory over J&J’s IL-23 contender Stelara on key endpoints. The drug targets both IL-17A and IL-17F, a modification on the IL-17A strategy laid out for Taltz (Eli Lilly) and Cosentyx (Novartis). And the new group also includes J&J’s Tremfya and AbbVie’s Skyrizi.

Social image: UCB