11 September 2018


("Sareum" or "the Company")

Pre-Close Trading Statement

Sareum Holdings plc (AIM: SAR), the drug discovery and development company, provides the following trading update ahead of its full year results for the year ending 30 June 2018. 

Operational highlights

  • Sierra Oncology (“Sierra”), the licence holder advancing clinical cancer candidate SRA737, made strong progress with its clinical development programmes for the Chk1 inhibitor in patients with advanced cancer
    • Phase 1/2 monotherapy trial evaluating SRA737 in patients with tumours identified to have genetic aberrations hypothesized to confer sensitivity to Chk1 inhibition, was expanded to include 145 genetically defined patients and prioritised for ovarian cancer with the addition of a further 25 patients for this indication – Phase 2 cohort expansion underway
    • Phase 1/2 study of SRA737 in combination with low-dose gemcitabine was modified to include 80 genetically defined patients in four cancer indications, with a target cohort of ovarian cancer patients replacing the originally proposed urothelial (bladder) cancer patients – Phase 2 cohort expansion underway
    • Sierra noted its plans to initiate a Phase 1b/2 combination trial of SRA737 with the orally administered PARP inhibitor, niraparib, in prostate cancer patients. The trial is expected to start in the fourth quarter of 2018
    • Sierra has generated preclinical data providing evidence of synergy between SRA737 and immune checkpoint blockade and is currently designing a clinical study for this combination
  • Sareum made good progress advancing its internal TYK2/JAK1 inhibitor programmes in autoimmune diseases and cancer
    • A potent, selective small molecule inhibitor of TYK2/JAK1, SDC-1801, has been selected for formal preclinical development as a potential treatment for autoimmune diseases (see announcement of 10 September 2018)
    • SDC-1801 demonstrates high selectivity for TYK2 and JAK1 kinases (particularly over related JAK2 and JAK3), compelling activity in disease models of psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis, the potential for once-daily oral dosing and a good early safety profile
    • Candidate selection for a distinct selective TYK2/JAK1 inhibitor targeting cancer indications is in the final stages
  • Sareum regained worldwide rights to preclinical-stage small molecule inhibitors of Aurora and FLT3 kinases that have shown potential in acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) and other haematological cancers.
    • The Company will seek a licence partner for this programme while it concentrates its research resources on its TYK2 preclinical development programmes

Financial highlights (subject to audit)

  • Sareum raised £700,000 before expenses in November 2017 through a placement of 100,000,000 new ordinary shares at 0.7p per share to progress its drug development programmes as well as for working capital purposes
  • Loss on ordinary activities (after taxation) of £1.47m (2017: profit of £400,000)
  • Cash at bank as at 30 June 2018 was £1.38m (£2.17m as at 31 December 2017; £2.31m as at 30 June 2017)

Sareum expects to report its full year results by mid- October.

For further information, please contact: 

Sareum Holdings plc


Tim Mitchell

 01223 497 700

WH Ireland Limited (Nominated Adviser)

Chris Fielding / James Sinclair-Ford

 020 7220 1666

Hybridan LLP (Broker)


Claire Noyce

 020 3764 2341

Citigate Dewe Rogerson (Media enquiries)


 Shabnam Bashir/ Mark Swallow/ David Dible

 020 7282 9571

About Sareum

Sareum is a specialist drug development company delivering targeted small molecule therapeutics, focusing on cancer and autoimmune disease. The Company generates value through licensing its candidates to international pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies at the preclinical or early clinical trials stage.

Sareum’s leading clinical-stage programme, SRA737, a novel Checkpoint kinase 1 (Chk1) inhibitor licensed to NASDAQ-listed Sierra Oncology, is in Phase 2 clinical trials targeting ovarian and other advanced cancers. The key role of Chk1 in cancer cell replication and DNA damage repair suggests that SRA737 may have broad application as a targeted therapy in combination with other oncology and immune-oncology drugs in genetically defined patients.

Sareum is also advancing internal programmes focused on distinct dual tyrosine kinase 2 (TYK2) /Janus kinase 1 (JAK1) inhibitors through preclinical development as therapies for autoimmune diseases and cancers. TYK2 and JAK1 have roles in pro-inflammatory responses in autoimmune diseases (e.g. psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel diseases and lupus) and tumour cell proliferation in certain cancers (e.g. T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia and some solid tumours). The Company is targeting first human clinical trials in each indication in 2020.

The Company also has an Aurora+FLT3 inhibitor targeting haematological cancers, which is at the preclinical development stage.

Sareum Holdings plc is listed on the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange, trading under the ticker SAR. For further information, please visit www.sareum.co.uk

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