Exicure Announces License and Development Agreement with Dermelix Biotherapeutics in Rare Genetic Skin Diseases

– Agreement Leverages Recent Clinical Success of Exicure in
Dermatology –

(OTCQB: XCUR), the pioneer in gene regulatory and
immunotherapeutic drugs utilizing spherical nucleic acid (SNA™)
constructs, and Dermelix
, a biopharmaceutical company focused on the
development of innovative treatments for rare genetic skin diseases,
today announced a license and development agreement to advance SNA
therapeutics in rare genetic skin diseases. Under the terms of
agreement, Dermelix licensed worldwide rights to research,
develop, and commercialize Exicure’s technology for the treatment of Netherton
and up to five additional rare skin indications.

Late last year we demonstrated the safety and clinical efficacy of our
platform in a Phase 1 clinical trial in patients with psoriasis.
Building on this success, we are now excited to extend the application
of our SNA technology into rare dermatological conditions,” said Dr.
David Giljohann, Chief Executive Officer of Exicure. “We look forward to
combining Exicure’s ability to design and develop nucleic acid
therapeutics with Dermelix’s deep knowledge of the clinical development
and regulatory pathways for patients with rare dermatological

Dr. Nick France, CEO of Dermelix noted, “Our company was founded to
address the lack of innovation within the field of rare dermatological
conditions. For too long patients have had few, or in many cases no,
available treatment options. We believe the SNA platform will facilitate
the rapid development of a portfolio of targeted treatment options for
these severely debilitating conditions.”

Dermelix will initially develop a targeted therapy for the treatment of
Netherton Syndrome (NS). NS is a rare and severe autosomal recessive
disorder caused by loss-of-function mutations in the SPINK5 gene,
which encodes the serine protease inhibitor LEKTI involved in skin
barrier function. NS affects approximately 1 in 200,000 children born
each year, and is characterized by severely inflamed, red, scaled, itchy
skin, and patients are at increased risk of mortality in the first year
of life due to recurrent infections and dehydration as a result of the
impaired skin barrier. Currently, there are no approved treatments for
NS patients and off-label use of standard of care treatments are of
limited utility.

Under the terms of the agreement, Exicure will receive an upfront
payment of $1 million at closing of the transaction and will receive an
additional $1 million upon the exercise of each of the five options
granted to Dermelix. Exicure will be responsible for conducting the
early stage development for each indication up to IND enabling
toxicology studies. Dermelix will assume subsequent development,
commercial activities and financial responsibility. Exicure is eligible
to receive potential payments following the achievement of certain
clinical, regulatory, and commercial milestones of approximately $166
million per indication in each of six indications. In addition, Exicure
will receive low double-digit royalties on annual net sales for SNA
therapeutics developed.

About Exicure, Inc.

Exicure is a clinical stage biotechnology company developing a new class
of immunomodulatory and gene regulating drugs against validated targets.
Exicure’s proprietary spherical nucleic acid (SNA™) architecture is
designed to unlock the potential of therapeutic oligonucleotides in a
wide range of cells and tissues. Exicure’s lead programs address
inflammatory diseases, genetic disorders and oncology. Exicure is based
outside of Chicago, IL. www.exicuretx.com

About Dermelix Biotherapeutics, LLC

Dermelix is a privately-held, clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company
focused on the development of innovative therapies for rare and
debilitating dermatologic conditions with high unmet medical need. For
more information, please visit http://www.dermelix.com/.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements (including within
the meaning of Section 21E of the United States Securities Exchange Act
of 1934, as amended, and Section 27A of the United States Securities Act
of 1933, as amended) concerning the Company, the Company’s technology,
potential therapies and other matters. Forward-looking statements
generally include statements that are predictive in nature and depend
upon or refer to future events or conditions, and include words such as
“may,” “will,” “should,” “would,” “expect,” “plan,” “believe,” “intend,”
“look forward,” and other similar expressions among others. Statements
that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements.
Forward-looking statements are based on current beliefs and assumptions
that are subject to risks and uncertainties and are not guarantees of
future performance. Actual results could differ materially from those
contained in any forward-looking statement as a result of various
factors, including, without limitation: unexpected costs, charges or
expenses that reduce cash runway; that Exicure’s pre-clinical programs,
including the announced partnership to treat rare genetic skin diseases
do not advance into the clinic or result in approved products on a
timely or cost effective basis or at all; the cost, timing and results
of clinical trials; possible safety and efficacy concerns; regulatory
developments; and the ability of Exicure to protect its intellectual
property rights. Risks facing the Company and its programs are set forth
in the Company’s filings with the SEC. Except as required by applicable
law, the Company undertakes no obligation to revise or update any
forward-looking statement, or to make any other forward-looking
statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or


Exicure Media Contacts:
MacDougall Biomedical Communications

Exicure Investor Contacts:
The Del Mar Consulting Group, Inc.
Prag, President

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