Press release -
Attgeno AB announces fully subscribed share issue to complete clinical phase II study in acute pulmonary hypertension
Attgeno announces that a successful share issue was completed at midsummer 2022 and resulted in SEK 20 million to a valuation of SEK 378 million after the issue. The issue consists of SEK 15 million in a rights issue to existing owners and a directed new issue of SEK 5 million to the Swedish life science focused venture fund Eir Ventures.
The proceeds will be used for the continued clinical development of the drug candidate Supernitro including patient studies, regulatory interaction with the FDA and optimization of the manufacturing process to prepare for market readiness of the drug once approved. The lion's share of the capital will be used for the clinical development program, including a recently launched phase 2 study in patients with pulmonary hypertension after heart surgery, and preparations for the next step thereafter. The goal is for the phase 2 study to confirm that Supernitro functions as an intravenous selective pulmonary vasodilator, an important milestone, and is aimed to be completed within 6-9 months. The reason for deviation from the shareholder’s preferential rights was to allow the Company to raise capital in a time and cost-effective manner and to attract a new high-quality investor.
“With the capital, and trust, that we now receive from previous and new investors, the company will be able to maintain a high pace in the development of the main product Supernitro. At the same time, we are building the organization in the company to meet the demands that future major clinical studies and more intensive interaction with the market will place, i.e. we are preparing to take the next step in the process of taking Supernitro to the patients," says Per Agvald, CEO.
The current investors include Hadean Ventures, a life science specialist investor, and the Swedish fund Eir Ventures, which has a similar profile, is now joining them through the private placement, jointly providing a strong position for future capitalization.
“We invest in Attgeno as the company's products can be part of the solution to a major problem in the care of our most seriously ill patients. Elevated pressure in the pulmonary circulation affects up to a third of everyone who is cared for in intensive care and causes significant excess mortality. Studies show that mortality in a number of conditions increases when the vessels in the lung contract and make it difficult for the right heart to maintain blood flow through the lungs. For example, a study by researchers at Karolinska Institutet where everyone who was admitted for intensive care at the New Karolinska Hospital during a period of the pandemic showed that mortality in the group that had developed pulmonary hypertension increased by about 600%,” says Stephan Christgau, PhD and Founding Partner at Eir Ventures Partners AB
We are delighted to continue to support Attgeno through this important and exciting phase advancing this pioneering therapy for the serious and often fatal condition of acute pulmonary hypertension, and we welcome Eir Ventures and other new investors in this joint mission,” comment Ingrid Teigland Akay, Managing Partner of Hadean Ventures and Attgeno board member.
The issue in brief:
- The Share issue generated SEK 20 million, by a Preferential share issue of SEK 15 million and a directed share issue of SEK 5 million.
- Enables the company to advance the clinical development program, in particular completing a phase II study in acute pulmonary hypertension.
- Strong support from current investor base, as well as new investor Eir Ventures.
- The subscription price, in both issue types, was set at SEK 350 generating an equity value (after the issue) of SEK 378 million.
Attgeno AB is a privately held Swedish pharmaceutical development company devoted to commercialization of innovative and effective nitric oxide-donating drugs. Its leading drug candidate Supernitro (PDNO) is currently in clinical development Phase II. For further information, please visit www.attgeno.com.
About Supernitro (PDNO)
Supernitro is administered as an intravenous infusion, which upon entry into the blood, has an ultra-short half-life rapidly releasing its active moiety nitric oxide (NO). As a result, most of its NO is released just through the short passage through the lung blood circulation where it reacts with the blood vessels and causes them to dilate. By the donation of NO in the lungs, Supernitro replaces the decrease in NO production that is a well-known consequence of different diseases leading to increased risk for pulmonary hypertension.
About pulmonary hypertension
Pulmonary hypertension is a condition of increased blood pressure in the arteries of the lungs. Symptoms include shortness of breath, fainting, tiredness, chest pain, swelling of the legs, and a fast heartbeat. Onset is typically gradual and prognosis poor.
The pathogenesis of pulmonary hypertension involves the narrowing of blood vessels connected to and within the lungs. This makes it harder for the heart to pump blood through the lungs, as it is much harder to make water flow through a narrow pipe as opposed to a wide one. Over time, the affected blood vessels become stiffer and thicker, in a process known as fibrosis. The mechanisms involved in this narrowing process include vasoconstriction, thrombosis, and vascular remodelling.