Leukemia and lymphoma biotech Rasna Therapeutics has pulled off a reverse merger with an unlikely partner as it plans to list on the OTC Markets under the symbol "ATVM."
The reverse merger, which more quickly propels the formerly private biotech into the public sphere, has been done through Active With Me--a Canadian company that offers online information on activity-based travel to travelers.
The two are strange bedfellows, given that U.K.-based Rasna Therapeutics works on cancer drugs, but the deal has now been finalized and allows the biotech to trade its shares publicly, with the combined company to be named Rasna Therapeutics.
The early-stage biotech is currently working on modulating the molecular targets LSD1 and NPM1, which are implicated in the progression of both leukemia and lymphoma.
“Becoming a public company is a key element of our growth strategy, and the completion of this reverse merger is a significant accomplishment for Rasna Therapeutics,” said James Tripp, acting CEO of Rasna.
“We believe that this breakthrough program may have significant benefits across all forms of leukemia. Our NPM1 program targets the sub-set of acute myeloid leukemia patients with the NPM1 mutation and may also benefit the general AML population. We are aiming to have a lead candidate identified by 2017.”
Rasna was formed in 2013 by biotech entrepreneur Gabriele Cerrone together with Dr. Roberto Pellicciari, a medicinal chemist and the scientific founder of Intercept Pharmaceuticals ($ICPT), and Dr. Brunangelo Falini, a physician and hematologist.
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