Rare Daily Staff

Beam Therapeutics raised $180 million in an upsized initial public offering, pricing 10.6 million shares at $17 a share.

The biotech, which is developing precision genetic medicines using base editing, sold 48 percent more shares than originally planned at the high end of its expected range. Shares will trade on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the ticker symbol “BEAM.”

Founded by leading scientists in CRISPR gene editing, Beam Therapeutics is pursuing therapies for serious diseases using its proprietary base editing technology, which can make precise edits to single base pairs in DNA and RNA.

The company has high hope for its technology, which it says can correct, modify, activate, silence, and edit genes at multiple sites at the same time without detectable translocations.

The company plans to address a variety of targets using three delivery technologies that have been clinically validated for a specific target: electroporation for hematology and oncology targets, non-viral liquid nano-particles for delivery of RNA therapies targeting liver diseases, and AAV-vector gene therapy delivery for ocular and central nervous system disorders.

Beam’s broad preclinical pipeline includes compounds in development for rare diseases such as sickle cell disease, beta thalassemia, alpha 1 antitrypsin deficiency, glycogen storage disorder 1a, Stargardt disease, an inherited form of macular degeneration, and other central nervous system disorders.

In its prospectus, Beam said the money will go towards advancing its base-editing programs into the clinic, with what it hopes will be several regulatory submissions in 2021 to begin human studies.

Photo: Beam Therapeutics team

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