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Silence Therapeutics well capitalised to carry out "strategic objectives"

The company had £36mln of cash as at August 31, putting it in a strong financial position

Silence Therapeutics PLC -
The company recently returned to the clinic

Silence Therapeutics PLC (LON:SLN) said it is well capitalised to carry out its "strategic objectives".

The comment from chief executive David Horn Solomon was made alongside the company’s interims for the six months to June 30.

The update revealed Silence has around £36mln as at August 31.

The figure included an upfront payment from new partner Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals, which is to develop and commercialise RNAi treatments based on the UK company’s technology.

Known as co-suppression, post-transcriptional gene silencing and quelling, RNA interference (RNAi) is a biological process in which RNA molecules inhibit gene expression or translation of rogue genes. The science is being tested in cancer research.

Silence’s lead drug, SLN124, a galnac-siRNA conjugate, recently entered the clinic and the first patients will be dosed by the year-end.

Developed for the treatment of iron overload disorders, SLN124 has orphan drug designation in Europe, which could help fast-track it.

"The first half of 2019 has been transformational for Silence with the game-changing RNAi collaboration with Mallinckrodt reached in July, following months of business development work in the first-half - a deal which provided us with a significant cash injection through the upfront and equity investment and provides for significant development and commercial milestones,” said CEO Horn Solomon.

“We have made excellent progress in returning to the clinic with SLN124 and expect to dose our first patient in the second-half and we are excited about the potential of this asset to treat patients with serious diseases such as β-thalassemia.

“We are well capitalised to deliver on our strategic objectives as we continue to drive value for shareholders and offer hope to patients with rare and serious conditions."

As is common with companies such as Silence, which are in the R&D phase, the business was loss-making.

The after-tax deficit was £8.2mln, while the cash outflow in the first six months of 2019 was £10.3mln.

Quick facts: Silence Therapeutics PLC

Price: 437 GBX

Market: AIM
Market Cap: £361.95 m

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