Bob Azelby. (Eliem photo)
Eliem Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biotech company developing therapies for pain, depression, and other nervous system disorders, has filed for public offering via an initial public offering.
The company’s filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission follows two private funding rounds that were previously $ 140 million this year, including a $ 60 million round in May.
The company, based in Redmond, Washington, was founded in 2019 and plans to list on the Nasdaq under the symbol ELYM. The IPO is expected to raise up to $ 80 million.
Eliem has two leading drug candidates under development: ETX-810 for chronic pain conditions and ETX-155 for mood disorders and epilepsy. ETX-810 is currently in Phase 2a trials for diabetic neuropathic pain and sciatica.
The startup is led by former Juno Therapeutics manager Bob Azelby, who is Eliem’s CEO. He was previously President and CEO of Seattle-based biotech company Alder BioPharmaceuticals, which was acquired by Lundbeck for $ 1.95 billion in 2019. Azelby was also the chief commercial officer at Seattle-based Juno, which was acquired by Celgene for $ 9 billion in 2018.
Another Alder veterinarian on the team is COO and CFO Erin M. Lavelle, who was previously COO at Alder.
The company’s founders include Andrew Levin, Managing Director at RA Capital Management and Chairman at Eliem, and Valerie Morisset, Chief Scientific Officer, who previously served as an executive at Convergence Pharmaceuticals.
Eliem’s IPO comes as biotech IPOs hit all-time highs nationwide and startup activity in Seattle is booming overall.
Two other Washington state biotech companies, Absci and Icosavax, also recently filed for IPO and are building on the IPOs of Sana Biotechnology, Impel Neuropharma and Lyell Immunopharma, based in South San Francisco and the Seattle area earlier this year on.
In June, Seattle-based Nautilus Biotechnology, led by Isilon Systems co-founder Sujal Patel, went public through a SPAC merger.
Other Seattle area startups that went public this year include billing and payments company Paymentus. The mobile remittance company Remitly has also filed its first IPO papers, while the pet start-up Rover is expected to go public soon via a SPAC deal.
(Via SEC filing)
Elieum’s ETX-810 program builds on previous clinical studies by other groups on a compound called PEA. PEA is a lipid-based molecule that is normally found in the body and has been evaluated in previous studies as a dietary supplement to treat pain. ETX-810 is designed to improve the body’s absorption and exposure of PEA, which can increase its effectiveness.
ETX-155 is a compound that affects the action of the neurotransmitter GABAA, a molecule that carries messages between neurons. The company plans to initiate Phase 2A trials for this compound in patients with major depressive disorder and perimenopausal depression, as well as a Phase 1b trial in patients with one form of epilepsy called photosensitive epilepsy.
Eliem is also developing a preclinical drug for pain and epilepsy and another for anxiety.
The company was founded through Boston-based RA Capital’s startup incubator, according to Business Insider, as part of the investment firm’s efforts to build early-stage biotechs and increase its stake. ETX-810 was developed inside the incubator and ETX-155 was originally developed by the biotech startup Athenen Therapeutics, which merged with Eliem.
Companies affiliated with RA Capital own approximately 52% of Eliem’s shares. Past Eliem supporters include Intermediate Capital Group, which led the Series B round, as well as Access Biotechnology, Samlyn Capital, Acorn Bioventures, and LifeArc.