Decibel Raises $127 Million in IPO to Advance Gene Therapies for Hearing and Balance Disorders
February 12, 2021
Rare Daily Staff
Decibel Therapeutics, a company developing transformative gene therapies treatments to restore and improve hearing and balance, raised $127 million in an initial public offering of 7.1 million shares of its common stock at $18 per share.
In addition, Decibel has granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 1.1 million shares of common stock at the public offering price less underwriting discounts and commissions. Shares will trade on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “DBTX.”
Decibel Therapeutics aims to deliver on its vision of a world in which the privileges of hearing and balance are available to all. The company has built a proprietary platform that integrates single-cell genomics and bioinformatic analyses, precision gene therapy technologies and expertise in inner ear biology. Decibel is leveraging its platform to advance gene therapies designed to selectively replace genes for the treatment of congenital, monogenic hearing loss and to regenerate inner ear hair cells for the treatment of acquired hearing and balance disorders.
At the end of January, Decibel partnered with genetic testing firm Invitae to launch a no-charge genetic testing program to screen for the genetic cause of congenital hearing loss in children diagnosed with auditory neuropathy.
Auditory neuropathy is a hearing disorder in which the cochlea, the hearing organ located in the inner ear, receives sound normally, yet the transmission of sound to the brain is interrupted. The most common genetic cause of auditory neuropathy is insufficient production of a protein called otoferlin, which facilitates communication between the inner ear sensory cells and the auditory nerve. When this protein is lacking, the ear cannot communicate with the auditory nerve and the brain, resulting in profound hearing loss. Decibel’s lead investigational gene therapy program, DB-OTO, is designed to treat congenital, monogenic hearing loss caused by a deficiency in the otoferlin gene.
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