Chief executive and co-founder Steve Harris said the
proceeds of the flotation in London, one of the biggest ever in the
biopharmaceutical sector, would also help the firm's programs in
other common allergies such as house dust mites, grass and ragweed.
Circassia was formed in 2006 to commercialize innovative technology
developed at Imperial College, which synthesizes part of the
allergens that cause reactions in sufferers.
The approach is quicker and has none of the side effects of
treatments that expose sufferers to small samples of the allergen to
build up resistance, Harris said on Thursday.
"We are not based on whole allergen-immunotherapy," he said.
"We take T-cell epitopes that are identified from the whole
allergen, we make them synthetically, and we give four injections
that treat the underlying disease rather than injections over weeks,
months or years."
The company had already received 105 million pounds of funding from
investors including Imperial Innovations, which holds just under 20
percent, Goldman Sachs, Invesco Perpetual and Lansdowne Partners, he
They had indicated they would support the fundraising, he said. A
small number of existing shares could also be included in the offer,
The company has conducted over 15 clinical
studies for its programs, he said, and the results of late-stage
trials in cat allergy in Europe, Canada and the United States were
expected in the first half of 2016.
[to top of second column]
It also has demonstrated proof-of-concept for treatments for
house-dust mite, grass and ragweed allergies, common conditions that
affect millions of people.
"Over the course of the last six months, we've had some excellent
data on our other programs and we are now in a position to push
forward on multiple fronts with a lot of confidence," Harris said.
JP Morgan Cazenove and Peel Hunt are the joint book runners on the
($1 = 0.6133 British pounds)
(Reporting by Paul Sandle; editing by
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