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25 June, 2019 - 17:15 By Jamie Quested

Cambridge cancer drug company in £500k AIM raise

Sareum Tim Mitchell

AIM-listed Sareum Holdings has raised £513,200, before expenses, through a placement by Hybridan LLP of 128,300,000 new ordinary shares of 0.025p each in the capital of the Cambridge cancer drug discovery and development business at 0.4p per share.

The net proceeds of the placing will be used to progress Sareum's TYK2/JAK1 drug development programmes as well as for working capital purposes.

Sareum Non-executive Director, Clive Birch has subscribed for 1,250,000 of these Placing Shares. It is anticipated that Admission will become effective at 8.00 am on 2 July 2018.

Dr Tim Mitchell, CEO of Sareum Holdings plc, said: "The potential for our two preclinical TYK2/JAK1 inhibitors in autoimmune diseases and cancer is gaining increasing clinical validation and we are convinced that SDC-1801 and SDC-1802 represent strong and well-differentiated candidates to address diseases within these areas. 

“We are focused on advancing these exciting preclinical candidates towards human trials as quickly as possible, aiming for first-in-man studies to begin in 2020."

Sareum idelivers targeted small molecule therapeutics, to improve the treatment of cancer and autoimmune disease. The Company generates value through licensing its candidates to international pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies at the preclinical or early clinical trials stage.

Sareum's leading clinical-stage programme, SRA737, a novel Checkpoint kinase 1 (Chk1) inhibitor licensed to NASDAQ-listed Sierra Oncology, is in Phase 2 clinical trials targeting multiple advanced cancers. The key role of Chk1 in cancer cell replication and DNA damage repair suggests that SRA737 may have broad application as a targeted therapy in combination with other oncology and immune-oncology drugs in genetically defined patients.

SRA737 was discovered and initially developed by scientists at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, UK in collaboration with Sareum, and with funding from Cancer Research UK. SRA737 was licensed to Sierra Oncology for up to $328.5 million plus royalties by Sareum's co-investment partner, CRT Pioneer Fund. Sareum is eligible to receive up to $88 million in milestone payments, plus sales royalties as SRA737 advances.

Sareum is also advancing internal programmes focused on distinct dual tyrosine kinase 2 (TYK2) /Janus kinase 1 (JAK1) inhibitors through preclinical development as therapies for autoimmune diseases (SDC-1801) and cancers (SDC-1802). 

TYK2 and JAK1 have roles in pro-inflammatory responses in autoimmune diseases (e.g. psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel diseases and lupus) and tumour cell proliferation in certain cancers (e.g. T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia and some solid tumours). The Company is targeting first human clinical trials in each indication in 2020.

The Company also has an Aurora+FLT3 inhibitor targeting haematological cancers, which is at the preclinical development stage.

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