Ziarco Pharma Ltd. emerged last year from a shuttered Pfizer Inc. R&D site in Sandwich, U.K., with a quartet of allergy and inflammation assets that otherwise would have been shelved and forgotten. The biotech's lead program for steroid-refractory atopic dermatitis could avoid toxicity issues that sidelined a competing program and could be first in class for the indication.

Last November, Ziarco in-licensed exclusive, worldwide rights to the assets. Pfizer received an equity stake and is eligible for milestones, plus royalties. Ziarco co-founder, President and CEO Mike Yeadon was VP and CSO of Pfizer's allergy and respiratory research unit at Sandwich.