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Natick biotech Karyopharm raises $109m

Shares of Karyopharm Therapeutics Inc., a four-year-old Natick company working on a drug that aids the body’s natural tumor-suppressing proteins, moved modestly higher in their first day of trading after the company raised $109 million in an initial public offering.

Karyopharm, which hopes to eventually develop a pipeline of drugs to treat cancers, inflammations, and other conditions, priced its shares at $16 apiece Tuesday night. The stock closed up 5 cents to $16.81 on the Nasdaq exchange Wednesday, a much smaller gain than the opening-day pops of other biotech public offerings this year.

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The company sold 6.8 million shares, more than the 5.7 million it originally planned to offer.

Karyopharm became the ninth Massachusetts biotechnology company to complete an IPO this year, placing the state’s sector first in the nation in minting public companies. Like Karyopharm, several of the other companies work in the field of cancer therapeutics or diagnostics.

The company joins Enanta Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals Inc. of Watertown and Cambridge-based Foundation Medicine Inc., Bind Therapeutics, Epizyme Inc., Bluebird Bio Inc., Agios Pharmaceuticals Inc., and Acceleron Pharma Inc., all of which have gone public in 2013.

Together, they have raised nearly $880 million.

Karyopharm’s leading private shareholder was Chione Ltd., an investment consortium that owned 46.8 percent of its stock before the IPO.

Underwriting the offering were the Boston investment bank Leerink Swann, along with Bank of America Corp., Merrill Lynch, JMP Securities, and Oppenheimer & Co.

Karyopharm had previously raised $100 million from private sources.

In a regulatory filing for its IPO registration, Karyopharm reported that it lost nearly $12.5 million on revenue of $366,000 during the first six months of 2013.

The company’s lead drug candidate, called Selinexor, is in early-stage clinical trials.

Robert Weisman can be reached at robert.weisman@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeRobW.
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