Silence Therapeutics PLC (LON:SLN) said it has strengthened its leadership ahead of a listing on the American growth market, Nasdaq.
It also confirmed it is in discussions with other potential commercial partners after inking a major deal with AstraZeneca earlier this year. And it laid out the timeline for progressing its two key drug candidates.
As part of a comprehensive shake-up the firm, which specialises in gene silencing, has also brought on board Investec as its broker and nominated advisor.
In a wide-ranging statement, Silence also said it will continue its search for the ‘optimal CEO’. In the meantime, chairman Iain Ross will perform his current role on a full-time executive basis.
Joining him on the board will be chief medical officer and head of R&D, Dr Giles Campion. He has held senior roles at a number of life sciences companies including Novartis. Campion is overseeing the progress of cardiovascular candidate SLN360, with his team on track to submit an investigational new drug package to the regulator later this year.
The US Food & Drug Administration, meanwhile, has granted Silence’s SLN124 asset rare paediatric disease designation for the treatment of a blood disorder called beta-thalassaemia and orphan drug designation for a form of cancer called myelodysplastic syndrome.
Clinical trials for both assets are planned to start this year, the coronavirus pandemic notwithstanding.
Such is commercial interest in Silence’s progress and pipeline that the business and alliance management team, run by John Stafford, is being strengthened.
Detailing plans to list American Depositary Shares on Nasdaq, Silence said chief financial officer Rob Quinn and New York-based general counsel Barbara Ruskin would lead this initiative.
“The company is at a critical stage of its development and I am very excited to be at the helm at this important time,” said chairman Ross.