The information in this preliminary prospectus supplement is not complete and may be changed. A registration statement relating to these securities has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and is effective. This preliminary prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus are not an offer to sell these securities and they are not soliciting an offer to buy these securities in any jurisdiction where the offer or sale is not permitted.
 Filed Pursuant to Rule 424(b)(5)
 Registration No. 333-256337​
SUBJECT TO COMPLETION, DATED JUNE 8, 2021
PRELIMINARY PROSPECTUS SUPPLEMENT
(To Prospectus Dated May 20, 2021)
$75,000,000
[MISSING IMAGE: LG_ACLARISTHERAPEUTIC-4C.JPG]
Common Stock
We are offering           shares of our common stock. Our common stock is listed on The Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “ACRS.” The last reported sale price of our common stock on The Nasdaq Global Select Market on June 7, 2021 was $22.38 per share.
Investing in our common stock involves a high degree of risk. See “Risk Factors” beginning on page S-5 of this prospectus supplement, page 4 of the accompanying prospectus and under similar headings in the documents incorporated by reference into this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus.
We are a “smaller reporting company” under applicable Securities and Exchange Commission rules and are subject to reduced public company reporting requirements. See “Prospectus Supplement Summary — Implications of Being a Smaller Reporting Company.”
Neither the Securities and Exchange Commission nor any state securities commission has approved or disapproved of these securities or determined if this prospectus supplement or the accompanying prospectus is truthful or complete. Any representation to the contrary is a criminal offense.
PER SHARE
TOTAL
Public Offering Price
$       $      
Underwriting Discounts and Commissions(1)
$       $      
Proceeds to Aclaris Therapeutics, Inc. before expenses
$       $      
(1)
We have agreed to reimburse the underwriters for certain expenses. See “Underwriting” beginning on page S-14 of this prospectus supplement for additional information regarding underwriter compensation.
Delivery of the shares of common stock is expected to be made on or about            , 2021. We have granted the underwriters an option for a period of 30 days to purchase up to an additional        shares of our common stock. If the underwriters exercise the option in full, the total underwriting discounts and commissions payable by us will be $       and the total proceeds to us, before expenses, will be $      .
Joint Bookrunners
Jefferies
SVB Leerink
Piper Sandler
Prospectus Supplement dated           , 2021

 
Table of Contents
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ABOUT THIS PROSPECTUS SUPPLEMENT
This document is part of a “shelf” registration statement on Form S-3 that we filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or the SEC, and is in two parts. The first part is this prospectus supplement, which describes the specific terms of this common stock offering and also adds to and updates information contained in the accompanying prospectus and the documents incorporated by reference herein. The second part, the accompanying prospectus, provides more general information. Generally, when we refer to this prospectus, we are referring to both parts of this document combined. To the extent there is a conflict between the information contained in this prospectus supplement and the information contained in the accompanying prospectus or any document incorporated by reference therein filed prior to the date of this prospectus supplement, you should rely on the information in this prospectus supplement; provided that if any statement in one of these documents is inconsistent with a statement in another document having a later date — for example, a document incorporated by reference in the accompanying prospectus — the statement in the document having the later date modifies or supersedes the earlier statement.
We further note that the representations, warranties and covenants made by us in any agreement that is filed as an exhibit to any document that is incorporated by reference herein were made solely for the benefit of the parties to such agreement, including, in some cases, for the purpose of allocating risk among the parties to such agreements, and should not be deemed to be a representation, warranty or covenant to you. Moreover, such representations, warranties or covenants were accurate only as of the date when made. Accordingly, such representations, warranties and covenants should not be relied on as accurately representing the current state of our affairs.
We have not authorized anyone to provide any information other than that contained or incorporated by reference in this prospectus supplement, the accompanying prospectus or in any free writing prospectus prepared by or on behalf of us or to which we have referred you. We take no responsibility for, and can provide no assurance as to the reliability of, any other information that others may give you. This prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus do not constitute an offer to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to purchase, the securities offered by this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus in any jurisdiction to or from any person to whom or from whom it is unlawful to make such offer or solicitation of an offer in such jurisdiction. The information contained in this prospectus supplement or the accompanying prospectus, or incorporated by reference herein or therein is accurate only as of the respective dates thereof, regardless of the time of delivery of this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus or of any sale of our common stock. It is important for you to read and consider all information contained in this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus, including the documents incorporated by reference herein and therein, in making your investment decision. You should also read and consider the information in the documents to which we have referred you in the sections entitled “Where You Can Find More Information” and “Incorporation of Certain Information by Reference” in this prospectus supplement and in the accompanying prospectus.
We are offering to sell, and seeking offers to buy, shares of our common stock only in jurisdictions where offers and sales are permitted. The distribution of this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus and the offering of the common stock in certain jurisdictions may be restricted by law. Persons outside the United States who come into possession of this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus must inform themselves about, and observe any restrictions relating to, the offering of the common stock and the distribution of this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus outside the United States. This prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus do not constitute, and may not be used in connection with, an offer to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to buy, any securities offered by this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus by any person in any jurisdiction in which it is unlawful for such person to make such an offer or solicitation.
Unless otherwise stated, all references in this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus to “we,” “us,” “our,” “Aclaris,” “company” and similar designations refer, collectively, to Aclaris Therapeutics, Inc. and, where appropriate, our subsidiaries.
 
S-ii

 
SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This prospectus supplement, the accompanying prospectus and the information incorporated by reference herein and therein contain forward-looking statements that involve substantial risks and uncertainties. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, contained in this prospectus supplement, the accompanying prospectus and the information incorporated by reference herein and therein, including statements regarding our strategy, future operations, future financial position, future revenue, projected costs, prospects, plans and objectives of management, are forward-looking statements. The words “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “predict,” “project,” “target,” “potential,” “will,” “would,” “could,” “should,” “continue,” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words.
The forward-looking statements in this prospectus supplement, the accompanying prospectus and the information incorporated by reference herein and therein include, among other things, statements about:

our plans to develop our drug candidates;

the timing of our planned clinical trials of our drug candidates and the reporting of the results from these trials;

the clinical utility of our drug candidates;

our plans and expectations related to manufacturing capabilities and strategy;

our expectations regarding coverage and reimbursement of our drug candidates, if approved;

the timing of our regulatory filings and approvals for our drug candidates;

our intellectual property position;

our plans to pursue strategic alternatives, including identifying and consummating transactions with third-party partners, to further develop, obtain marketing approval for and/or commercialize our drug candidates, and earn revenue from such arrangements;

our expectations regarding competition;

our expectations regarding our continued reliance on third parties;

our expectations regarding our use of capital;

our estimates regarding future revenue, expenses and needs for additional financing;

the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on our business; and

our intended use of proceeds from this offering.
We may not actually achieve the plans, intentions or expectations disclosed in our forward-looking statements, and you should not place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements. Actual results or events could differ materially from the plans, intentions and expectations disclosed in the forward-looking statements we make. We have included important factors in the cautionary statements included in this prospectus supplement, particularly in the “Risk Factors” section, that we believe could cause actual results or events to differ materially from the forward-looking statements that we make. Our forward-looking statements do not reflect the potential impact of any future acquisitions, mergers, dispositions, joint ventures or investments we may make.
You should read this prospectus supplement, the accompanying prospectus and the information incorporated by reference herein and therein completely and with the understanding that our actual future results may be materially different from what we expect. We do not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statements.
 
S-iii

 
PROSPECTUS SUPPLEMENT SUMMARY
This summary highlights selected information contained elsewhere in this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus and in the documents we incorporate by reference. This summary does not contain all of the information you should consider before investing in our common stock. You should read this entire prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus carefully, especially the risks of investing in our common stock discussed under “Risk Factors” beginning on page S-5 of this prospectus supplement and under a similar heading in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020, which is incorporated by reference in this prospectus supplement, along with our consolidated financial statements and notes to those consolidated financial statements and the other information incorporated by reference in this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus, before making an investment decision.
Company Overview
We are a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing novel drug candidates for immuno-inflammatory diseases. In addition to developing our novel drug candidates, we are pursuing strategic alternatives, including identifying and consummating transactions with third-party partners, to further develop, obtain marketing approval for and/or commercialize our novel drug candidates.
Recent Developments
Preliminary Topline Data from Phase 2a Clinical Trial of ATI-1777 for Moderate to Severe Atopic Dermatitis
On June 8, 2021, we announced positive preliminary topline results from our first-in-human Phase 2a, multicenter, randomized, double-blind, vehicle-controlled, parallel-group clinical trial to evaluate the efficacy, safety, tolerability and pharmacokinetics of ATI-1777, an investigational topical “soft” JAK 1/3 inhibitor, in 50 subjects with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis, or AD.
In the trial, which consisted of a 4-week treatment period and a 2-week follow-up period during which no treatment was given, 50 subjects with moderate to severe AD were randomized in a 1:1 ratio into one of two arms: ATI-1777 topical solution 2.0% w/w or vehicle applied twice daily. A preliminary analysis of pharmacokinetic plasma samples in the ATI-1777 arm showed greater than 86% of the plasma samples had concentrations below 1 ng/ml and mean drug levels in the ATI-1777 arm (as a group) were not greater than 5% of the IC50 of ATI-1777.
The primary efficacy endpoint of this trial was the percent change from baseline in the modified Eczema Area and Severity Index, or mEASI, score at week 4. The mEASI is a modified measure of EASI which excludes evaluation of the body areas that were not treated in the trial (i.e., the head, palms of hands, soles of feet, groin, or genitalia). Only the primary efficacy endpoint was powered to detect a statistically significant outcome.
The Full Analysis Set, or FAS, which was comprised of subjects randomized and documented to have received at least one dose of trial medication, was used for the primary endpoint. Two subjects in the ATI-1777 arm were excluded from the FAS analysis on the basis that they were lost to follow up after the baseline visit and did not have a formal record of having received at least one dose of trial medication. Key secondary efficacy endpoints, which were not powered for statistical significance, included the proportion of subjects who achieved 50% improvement in mEASI score, or mEASI-50, within 4 weeks of the start of treatment, the change from baseline in the Investigator’s Global Assessment, or IGA, score at each trial visit, IGA responder analysis, change from baseline in Body Surface Area, or BSA, affected by AD at each trial visit, and change from baseline in peak pruritus numerical rating scale score over time.
The FAS was comprised of 23 and 25 subjects in the ATI-1777 and vehicle arms, respectively. The trial achieved its primary endpoint with a high degree of statistical significance (p<0.001) (one-sided p-value), which corresponded to a 74.4% reduction in mEASI score from baseline at week 4 in subjects applying ATI‑1777 compared to a 41.4% reduction in subjects applying vehicle. In addition, a post-hoc analysis which included the two randomized subjects not in the FAS, using their baseline mEASI score carried forward to day 28, was statistically significant (p=0.002) (one-sided p-value).
In addition, positive trends in favor of ATI-1777 were observed in key secondary efficacy endpoints, such as improvement in itch, percent of mEASI-50 responders, IGA responder analysis, and reduction in BSA impacted by disease.
 
S-1

 
ATI-1777 was generally well tolerated. Nine subjects in each arm reported treatment-emergent adverse events (9/23 and 9/25 in the ATI-1777 and vehicle arm, respectively). No serious adverse events, or AEs, were reported. One treatment-related AE, application site pruritus, was reported in one subject in the ATI-1777 arm. The most common AEs (reported in two or more subjects in the trial) were increased blood creatinine phosphokinase and headache in subjects in the ATI-1777 arm and urinary tract infection (one each in the ATI-1777 and the vehicle arm); none of these AEs in the ATI-1777 arm were determined by the clinical trial investigators to be related to ATI-1777. There were no reports of thrombosis in the trial. In the FAS analysis, two subjects from the ATI-1777 arm withdrew from the trial (one lost to follow up, one withdrew consent), while seven subjects withdrew from the vehicle arm (three due to AEs and four withdrew consent).
Legal Proceedings Update
As previously disclosed, we and certain of our executive officers were named as defendants in a class action lawsuit alleging violations of federal securities laws, and certain of our directors and executive officers were named as defendants in a related stockholder derivative lawsuit alleging breaches of fiduciary duties in connection with the securities class action lawsuit. Each of these proceedings is described in further detail in the “Legal Proceedings” section of our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on May 7, 2021, which is incorporated by reference into this prospectus supplement.
In June 2021, we and the respective plaintiffs agreed to settle each of the foregoing proceedings, although the terms of the settlements are subject to final approval by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. Although the proposed settlement of each proceeding is not yet final, we expect that our financial obligations under both proposed settlements will be within the limits of our insurance coverage.
Risks Associated With Our Business
Our business is subject to a number of risks of which you should be aware before making an investment decision. These risks are discussed more fully in the “Risk Factors” section of this prospectus supplement immediately following this prospectus supplement summary and in the “Risk Factors” section in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020, which is incorporated by reference in this prospectus supplement. These risks include the following:

We have incurred significant losses since our inception. We expect to incur losses over the next several years and may never achieve or maintain profitability.

We will need substantial additional funding to meet our financial obligations and to pursue our business objectives. If we are unable to raise capital when needed, we could be forced to curtail our planned operations.

Our business is dependent on the successful development of our investigational drug candidate, ATI-450.

We have a limited history as a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing and partnering our drug candidates, which may make it difficult to evaluate the success of our business to date and to assess our future viability.

If we are unable to successfully develop our drug candidates and to pursue strategic alternatives, including identifying and consummating transactions with third-party partners, to further develop, obtain marketing approval for and/or commercialize our drug candidates, or experience significant delays in doing so, our business will be harmed.

Our future success depends on our ability to retain key executives and to attract, retain and motivate qualified personnel.

We intend to pursue strategic alternatives, including identifying and consummating transactions with third-party partners, to further develop, obtain marketing approval for and/or commercialize our drug candidates. If those arrangements are not successful, we may not be able to capitalize on the market potential of these drug candidates.

Our business has been adversely impacted and could continue to be adversely affected by the evolving and ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic in regions where we or third parties on which we rely have manufacturing facilities, clinical trial sites or other business operations. The COVID-19 pandemic could adversely affect our operations, including at our headquarters and at our clinical trial sites, as well
 
S-2

 
as the business or operations of our manufacturers, contract research organizations or other third parties with whom we conduct business.

If we are unable to obtain and maintain patent protection for our drug candidates, or if the scope of the patent protection obtained is not sufficiently broad, our competitors could develop and commercialize technology and drugs similar or identical to ours, and our ability to successfully pursue strategic alternatives, including identifying and consummating transactions with potential third-party partners, to commercialize our technology and drug candidates may be impaired.

We face substantial competition, which may result in others discovering, developing or commercializing drugs before or more successfully than we do.
Corporate Information
We were incorporated under the laws of the State of Delaware in July 2012. Our principal executive offices are located at 640 Lee Road, Suite 200, Wayne, PA 19087. Our telephone number is (484) 324-7933. Our common stock is listed on The Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “ACRS.”
Our internet website address is www.aclaristx.com. The information contained on our website is not incorporated by reference into this prospectus supplement, and you should not consider any information contained on, or that can be accessed through, our website as part of this prospectus supplement or in deciding whether to purchase our securities.
“Aclaris”, the Aclaris logo, ESKATA and KINECT and our other trademarks or service marks appearing in this prospectus supplement or incorporated herein by reference are our property. This prospectus supplement and the information incorporated herein by reference contains additional trade names, trademarks and service marks of others, which are the property of their respective owners.
Implications of Being a Smaller Reporting Company
We are a “smaller reporting company” as defined in Item 10(f)(1) of Regulation S-K. Smaller reporting companies may take advantage of certain reduced disclosure obligations, including, among other things, providing only two years of audited financial statements. We will remain a smaller reporting company until the last day of any fiscal year for so long as either (1) the market value of our shares of common stock held by non-affiliates does not equal or exceed $250.0 million as of the prior June 30th, or (2) our annual revenues did not equal or exceed $100.0 million during such completed fiscal year and the market value of our shares of common stock held by non-affiliates did not equal or exceed $700.0 million as of the prior June 30th. To the extent we take advantage of any reduced disclosure obligations, it may make comparison of our financial statements with other public companies difficult or impossible. We expect to cease being a smaller reporting company on December 31, 2021.
 
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THE OFFERING
Common Stock offered
by Aclaris
       shares
Common Stock to be outstanding
after this offering
      shares (or      shares if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional shares)
Option to purchase additional shares
We have granted the underwriters an option to purchase up to an additional      shares of our common stock from us. The underwriters can exercise this option, in whole or in part, at any time within 30 days from the date of this prospectus supplement.
Use of Proceeds
We estimate that the net proceeds to us from this offering, after deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us, will be approximately $      million, or approximately $      million if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional shares from us in full. We intend to use the net proceeds from this offering for the research and development of our drug candidates in our pipeline and for working capital and general corporate purposes. See “Use of Proceeds” on page S-7 of this prospectus supplement.
Risk Factors
You should read the “Risk Factors” section of this prospectus supplement beginning on page S-5, page 4 of the accompanying prospectus and the “Risk Factors” section in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020, which is incorporated by reference, for a discussion of factors to consider carefully before deciding to invest in shares of our common stock.
Nasdaq Global Select Market symbol
ACRS
The number of shares of our common stock to be outstanding after this offering is based on 52,081,729 shares of our common stock outstanding as of March 31, 2021 and excludes:

3,714,466 shares of our common stock issuable upon the exercise of stock options outstanding as of March 31, 2021, at a weighted average exercise price of $17.25 per share;

2,411,611 shares of common stock subject to restricted stock units outstanding as of March 31, 2021; and

an aggregate of 2,937,121 shares of common stock reserved for future issuance under our 2015 equity incentive plan as of March 31, 2021, plus any additional shares of our common stock that may become available under our 2015 equity incentive plan.
Unless otherwise indicated, all information in this prospectus supplement assumes no exercise of the outstanding options described above and no exercise by the underwriters of their option to purchase additional shares of our common stock.
 
S-4

 
RISK FACTORS
Investing in our common stock involves a high degree of risk. Before you decide to invest in our common stock, you should carefully consider the risks and uncertainties described below together with all other information contained in this prospectus supplement, the accompanying prospectus and in our filings with the SEC that we have incorporated by reference in this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus. The risk factors included in this prospectus supplement update the corresponding risk factors incorporated by reference in this prospectus supplement from our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020. If any of the following risks or any of the risks incorporated herein by reference actually occurs, our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition could suffer materially. In such event, the trading price of our common stock could decline and you might lose all or part of your investment.
Risks Related to this Offering
Raising additional capital, including as a result of this offering, may cause dilution to our stockholders, restrict our operations or require us to relinquish rights to our drug candidates.
Until such time, if ever, as we can generate substantial revenue, we expect to finance our cash needs through a combination of equity offerings, debt financings and license and partnership agreements. To the extent that we raise additional capital through the sale of equity securities, including from this offering, or convertible debt securities, your ownership interest will be diluted, and the terms of these securities may include liquidation or other preferences that adversely affect your rights as a common stockholder. Debt financing and preferred equity financing, if available, may involve agreements that include covenants limiting or restricting our ability to take specific actions, such as incurring additional debt, making capital expenditures or declaring dividends.
If we raise additional funds through partnerships, strategic alliances or marketing, distribution or licensing arrangements with third parties, we may be required to relinquish valuable rights to our technologies, intellectual property, potential future revenue streams, or drug candidates or grant licenses on terms that may not be favorable to us. If we are unable to raise additional funds through equity or debt financings or other arrangements with third parties when needed, we may be required to delay, limit, reduce or terminate our drug development efforts or grant rights to third parties to develop technologies, intellectual property, or drug candidates that we would otherwise prefer to develop ourselves.
If you purchase shares of common stock in this offering, you will suffer immediate dilution of your investment.
The price of our common stock in this offering is substantially higher than the net tangible book value per share of our common stock. Therefore, if you purchase shares of our common stock in this offering, you will pay a price per share that substantially exceeds our net tangible book value per share after this offering. To the extent outstanding options are exercised, you will incur further dilution. Based on a public offering price of $      per share, you will experience immediate dilution of $      per share, representing the difference between our as adjusted net tangible book value per share after giving effect to this offering and the public offering price.
We have broad discretion over the use of our cash and cash equivalents, including the net proceeds we receive in this offering, and may not use them effectively.
Our management has broad discretion to use our cash and cash equivalents, including the net proceeds we receive in this offering, to fund our operations and could spend these funds in ways that do not improve our results of operations or enhance the value of our common stock. The failure by our management to apply these funds effectively could result in financial losses that could have an adverse effect on our business, cause the price of our common stock to decline and delay the development of our drug candidates. Pending their use to fund operations, we may invest our cash and cash equivalents in a manner that does not produce income or that loses value.
A significant portion of our total outstanding shares are eligible to be sold into the market in the near future, which could cause the market price of our common stock to drop significantly, even if our business is doing well.
Sales of a substantial number of shares of our common stock in the public market, or the perception in the market that the holders of a large number of shares intend to sell shares, could reduce the market price of our
 
S-5

 
common stock. Upon completion of this offering, based on our shares outstanding as of March 31, 2021, we will have           shares of common stock outstanding, assuming no exercise of the underwriters’ option to purchase additional shares of common stock. Of these shares,           are subject to a contractual lock-up with the underwriters for this offering for a period of 90 days following this offering. These shares can be sold, subject to any applicable volume limitations under federal securities laws, after the earlier of the expiration of, or release from, the 90-day lock-up period. The balance of our outstanding shares of common stock, including any shares purchased in this offering, may be resold into the public market immediately without restriction, unless owned or purchased by our affiliates.
All of our outstanding options and restricted stock units or shares that are otherwise issuable under our equity compensation plans are registered under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Securities Act, on registration statements on Form S-8. These shares can be freely sold in the public market upon issuance, subject to volume limitations applicable to affiliates and the lock-up agreements described above, to the extent applicable.
Risks Related to our Business
Interim, topline and preliminary data from our clinical trials that we announce or publish from time to time may change as more subject data become available and are subject to audit and verification procedures that could result in material changes in the final data.
From time to time, we may publicly disclose interim, topline or preliminary data from our clinical trials, such as the preliminary topline results from our Phase 2a trial of ATI-1777 in subjects with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis, which are based on a preliminary analysis of then-available data, and the results and related findings and conclusions are subject to change following a full analysis of all data related to the particular trial. We also make assumptions, estimations, calculations and conclusions as part of our analyses of data, and we may not have received or had the opportunity to fully and carefully evaluate all data. In addition, we may report preliminary analyses of only certain endpoints rather than all endpoints. As a result, the interim, topline or preliminary results that we report may differ from future results of the same trials, or different conclusions or considerations may qualify such results, once additional data have been received and fully evaluated. Topline data also remain subject to audit and verification procedures that may result in the final data being materially different from the preliminary data we previously published. As a result, interim, topline and preliminary data should be viewed with caution until the final data are available. We may also disclose interim data from our clinical trials. Interim data from clinical trials that we may complete are subject to the risk that one or more of the clinical outcomes may materially change as subject enrollment continues and more subject data become available. Adverse differences between interim, topline or preliminary data and final data could significantly harm our reputation and business prospects. Further, disclosure of interim, topline or preliminary data by us or by our competitors could result in volatility in the price of our common stock after this offering.
Further, others, including regulatory agencies, may not accept or agree with our assumptions, estimates, calculations, conclusions or analyses or may interpret or weigh the importance of data differently, which could impact the potential of the particular program, the likelihood of marketing approval or commercialization of the particular drug candidate, any approved product, and our company in general. In addition, the information we choose to publicly disclose regarding a particular study or clinical trial is derived from information that is typically extensive, and you or others may not agree with what we determine is material or otherwise appropriate information to include in our disclosure, and any information we determine not to disclose may ultimately be deemed significant with respect to future decisions, conclusions, views, activities or otherwise regarding a particular program, drug candidate or our business.
If the interim, topline or preliminary data that we report differ from actual results, or if others, including regulatory authorities, disagree with the conclusions reached, our ability to pursue strategic alternatives, including identifying and consummating transactions with third-party partners, to further develop, obtain marketing approval for and/or commercialize our drug candidates may be harmed, which could harm our business, operating results, prospects or financial condition.
 
S-6

 
USE OF PROCEEDS
We estimate that the net proceeds to us from our issuance and sale of shares of our common stock in this offering will be approximately $      million, or approximately $      million if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase up to           additional shares of common stock, based on the public offering price of $      per share, and after deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us.
We intend to use the net proceeds from this offering for the research and development of our drug candidates in our pipeline and for working capital and general corporate purposes. We may also use a portion of the net proceeds to invest in or acquire additional businesses or technologies that we believe are complementary to our own, although we have no current plans, commitments or agreements with respect to any future acquisitions as of the date of this prospectus supplement.
Our expected use of the net proceeds from this offering represents our intentions based upon our current plans and business conditions, which could change in the future as our plans and business conditions evolve. The amounts and timing of our actual expenditures may vary significantly depending on numerous factors, including the progress of our drug candidate development, the status of and results from clinical trials, as well as any partnerships that we may enter into with third parties for our drug candidates, and any unforeseen cash needs.
As a result, our management will retain broad discretion over the allocation of the net proceeds from this offering, and investors will be relying on the judgment of our management regarding the application of the net proceeds from this offering. The timing and amount of our actual expenditures will be based on many factors, including cash flows from operations and the anticipated growth of our business. Pending these uses, we expect to invest the net proceeds in short-term, interest bearing obligations, certificates of deposit or direct or guaranteed obligations of the United States. The goal with respect to the investment of these net proceeds is capital preservation and liquidity so that such funds are readily available to fund our operations.
Based on the planned use of proceeds described above, we believe that the net proceeds from this offering and our current cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities will be sufficient to enable us to fund our operating expenses and capital expenditure requirements into                 . We have based this estimate on assumptions that may prove to be incorrect, and we could use our available capital resources sooner than we currently expect.
 
S-7

 
DIVIDEND POLICY
We have never declared or paid any dividends on our common stock. We anticipate that we will retain all of our future earnings, if any, for use in the operation and expansion of our business and do not anticipate paying cash dividends in the foreseeable future. In addition, our Loan and Security Agreement with Silicon Valley Bank currently prohibits us from paying dividends without their consent, and the terms of any future debt agreements may likewise preclude us from paying dividends.
 
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DILUTION
If you invest in our common stock in this offering, your interest will be diluted immediately to the extent of the difference between the public offering price per share you will pay in this offering and the as adjusted net tangible book value per share of our common stock after this offering. Our historical net tangible book value as of March 31, 2021 was $105.2 million, or $2.02 per share of common stock. Historical net tangible book value per share represents the amount of our total tangible assets less total liabilities, divided by the number of shares of our common stock outstanding on March 31, 2021.
After giving effect to our issuance and sale of                 shares of common stock in this offering at a public offering price of $      per share, and after deducting the underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us, our as adjusted net tangible book value as of March 31, 2021 would have been $      million, or $      per share. This represents an immediate increase in as adjusted net tangible book value per share of $      to existing stockholders and immediate dilution of $      in as adjusted net tangible book value per share to new investors purchasing common stock in this offering. Dilution per share to new investors is determined by subtracting as adjusted net tangible book value per share after this offering from the public offering price per share paid by new investors. The following table illustrates this per share dilution to the new investors purchasing shares of common stock in this offering without giving effect to the option to purchase additional shares granted to the underwriters:
Public offering price per share
$
Net tangible book value per share as of March 31, 2021
$ 2.02
Increase per share attributable to sale of shares of common stock in this offering
As adjusted net tangible book value per share after this offering
Dilution per share to new investors
$     
If the underwriters exercise their option to purchase                 additional shares in full at the public offering price of $      per share, the as adjusted net tangible book value will increase to $      per share, representing an immediate increase to existing stockholders of $      per share and an immediate dilution of $      per share to new investors.
The above discussion and table are based on 52,081,729 shares of our common stock outstanding as of March 31, 2021 and exclude:

3,714,466 shares of our common stock issuable upon the exercise of stock options outstanding as of March 31, 2021, at a weighted average exercise price of $17.25 per share;

2,411,611 shares of common stock subject to restricted stock units outstanding as of March 31, 2021; and

an aggregate of 2,937,121 shares of common stock reserved for future issuance under our 2015 equity incentive plan as of March 31, 2021, plus any additional shares of our common stock that may become available under our 2015 equity incentive plan.
To the extent that any options are exercised, new stock awards are issued under our 2015 equity incentive plan or we otherwise issue additional shares of common stock in the future at a price less than the public offering price, there may be further dilution to new investors purchasingcommon stock in this offering.
 
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MATERIAL U.S. FEDERAL INCOME TAX CONSEQUENCES TO NON-U.S. HOLDERS
The following summary describes the material U.S. federal income tax consequences of the acquisition, ownership, and disposition of our common stock acquired in this offering by Non-U.S. Holders (as defined below). This discussion is not a complete analysis of all potential U.S. federal income tax consequences relating thereto, does not deal with non-U.S., state, and local consequences that may be relevant to Non-U.S. Holders in light of their particular circumstances, and does not address U.S. federal tax consequences (such as gift and estate taxes) other than income taxes. Special rules different from those described below may apply to certain Non-U.S. Holders that are subject to special treatment under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, or the Code, such as financial institutions, insurance companies, tax-exempt organizations, tax-qualified retirement plans, governmental organizations, broker-dealers and traders in securities, U.S. expatriates, “controlled foreign corporations,” “passive foreign investment companies,” corporations that accumulate earnings to avoid U.S. federal income tax, corporations organized outside of the United States, any state thereof, or the District of Columbia that are nonetheless treated as U.S. taxpayers for U.S. federal income tax purposes, persons that hold our common stock as part of a “straddle,” “hedge,” “conversion transaction,” “synthetic security,” or integrated investment or other risk reduction strategy, persons who acquire our common stock through the exercise of an option or otherwise as compensation, persons subject to the alternative minimum tax or federal Medicare contribution tax on net investment income, persons subject to special tax accounting rules under Section 451(b) of the Code, “qualified foreign pension funds” as defined in Section 897(l)(2) of the Code and entities all of the interests of which are held by qualified foreign pension funds, partnerships and other pass-through entities or arrangements and investors in such pass-through entities or arrangements, and persons deemed to sell our common stock under the constructive sale provisions of the Code. Such Non-U.S. Holders are urged to consult their own tax advisors to determine the U.S. federal, state, local, and other tax consequences that may be relevant to them. Furthermore, the discussion below is based upon the provisions of the Code and Treasury Regulations, rulings, and judicial decisions thereunder, each as of the date hereof, and such authorities may be repealed, revoked, or modified, perhaps retroactively, so as to result in U.S. federal income tax consequences different from those discussed below. We have not requested a ruling from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, or the IRS, with respect to the statements made and the conclusions reached in the following summary, and there can be no assurance that the IRS will agree with such statements and conclusions. This discussion assumes that the Non-U.S. Holder holds our common stock as a “capital asset” within the meaning of Section 1221 of the Code (generally, property held for investment).
This discussion is for informational purposes only and is not tax advice. Persons considering the purchase of our common stock pursuant to this offering should consult their own tax advisors concerning the U.S. federal income, gift, estate, and other tax consequences of acquiring, owning, and disposing of our common stock in light of their particular situations as well as any consequences arising under the laws of any other taxing jurisdiction, including any state, local, or foreign tax consequences, or under any applicable income tax treaty.
For the purposes of this discussion, a “Non-U.S. Holder” is a beneficial owner of common stock that is neither a U.S. Holder nor a partnership (or other entity treated as a partnership for U.S. federal income tax purposes regardless of its place of organization or formation). A “U.S. Holder” means a beneficial owner of our common stock that is for U.S. federal income tax purposes any of the following:

an individual who is a citizen or resident of the United States;

a corporation or other entity treated as a corporation for U.S. federal income tax purposes created or organized in or under the laws of the United States, any state thereof, or the District of Columbia;

an estate the income of which is subject to U.S. federal income taxation regardless of its source; or

a trust if it (1) is subject to the primary supervision of a court within the United States and one or more United States persons (within the meaning of Section 7701(a)(30) of the Code) have the authority to control all substantial decisions of the trust or (2) has a valid election in effect under applicable U.S. Treasury Regulations to be treated as a United States person.
Distributions
As described in the section titled “Dividend Policy,” we do not anticipate declaring or paying dividends to holders of our common stock in the foreseeable future. However, if we do make distributions of cash or property
 
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on our common stock to a Non-U.S. Holder, such distributions, to the extent made out of our current or accumulated earnings and profits (as determined under U.S. federal income tax principles), generally will constitute dividends for U.S. tax purposes and will be subject to withholding tax at a 30% rate or such lower rate as may be specified by an applicable income tax treaty, subject to the discussions below regarding effectively connected income, backup withholding, and foreign accounts. To obtain a reduced rate of withholding under a treaty, a Non-U.S. Holder generally will be required to provide us with a properly executed IRS Form W-8BEN (in the case of individuals) or IRS Form W-8BEN-E (in the case of entities), or other appropriate form, certifying the Non-U.S. Holder’s entitlement to benefits under that treaty. We do not intend to adjust our withholding unless such certificates are provided to us or our paying agent before the payment of dividends and are updated as may be required by the IRS. In the case of a Non-U.S. Holder that is an entity, Treasury Regulations and the relevant tax treaty provide rules to determine whether, for purposes of determining the applicability of a tax treaty, dividends will be treated as paid to the entity or to those holding an interest in that entity. If a Non-U.S. Holder holds stock through a financial institution or other agent acting on the holder’s behalf, the holder will be required to provide appropriate documentation to such agent. The holder’s agent will then be required to provide certification to us or our paying agent, either directly or through other intermediaries. If you are eligible for a reduced rate of U.S. federal withholding tax under an income tax treaty and you do not timely file the required certification, you may be able to obtain a refund or credit of any excess amounts withheld by timely filing an appropriate claim for a refund with the IRS.
We generally are not required to withhold tax on dividends paid to a Non-U.S. Holder that are effectively connected with the Non-U.S. Holder’s conduct of a trade or business within the United States (and, if required by an applicable income tax treaty, are attributable to a permanent establishment or fixed base that such holder maintains in the United States) if a properly executed IRS Form W-8ECI, stating that the dividends are so connected, is furnished to us (or, if stock is held through a financial institution or other agent, to such agent). In general, such effectively connected dividends will be subject to U.S. federal income tax on a net income basis at the regular rates applicable to U.S. residents. A corporate Non-U.S. Holder receiving effectively connected dividends may also be subject to an additional “branch profits tax,” which is imposed, under certain circumstances, at a rate of 30% (or such lower rate as may be specified by an applicable treaty) on the corporate Non-U.S. Holder’s effectively connected earnings and profits, subject to certain adjustments. Non-U.S. Holders should consult their tax advisors regarding any applicable income tax treaties that may provide for different rules.
To the extent distributions on our common stock, if any, exceed our current and accumulated earnings and profits, they will first reduce the Non-U.S. Holder’s adjusted basis in our common stock, but not below zero, and then will be treated as capital gain to the extent of any amount distributed in excess of such holder’s adjusted tax basis, and taxed in the same manner as gain realized from a sale or other disposition of common stock as described in the next section.
Gain on disposition of our common stock
Subject to the discussions below regarding backup withholding and foreign accounts, a Non-U.S. Holder generally will not be subject to U.S. federal income tax with respect to gain realized on a sale or other disposition of our common stock unless (a) the gain is effectively connected with a trade or business of such holder in the United States (and, if required by an applicable income tax treaty, is attributable to a permanent establishment or fixed base that such holder maintains in the United States), (b) the Non-U.S. Holder is a nonresident alien individual and is present in the United States for 183 or more days in the taxable year of the disposition and certain other conditions are met, or (c) we are or have been a “United States real property holding corporation” within the meaning of Code Section 897(c)(2) at any time within the shorter of the five-year period preceding such disposition or such holder’s holding period in our common stock. In general, we would be a United States real property holding corporation if the fair market value of our U.S. real property interests equals or exceeds 50% of the sum of the fair market value of our worldwide real property interests plus our other assets used or held for use in a trade or business. We believe that we have not been and we are not, and do not anticipate becoming, a United States real property holding corporation. Even if we are treated as a United States real property holding corporation, gain realized by a Non-U.S. Holder on a disposition of our common stock will not be subject to U.S. federal income tax so long as (1) the Non-U.S. Holder owned, directly, indirectly, and constructively, no more than 5% of our common stock at all times within the shorter of (i) the five-year period preceding the disposition or (ii) the holder’s holding period in our common stock and
 
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(2) our common stock is “regularly traded,” as defined by applicable Treasury Regulations, on an established securities market. There can be no assurance that our common stock will continue to qualify as regularly traded on an established securities market. If any gain on your disposition is taxable because we are a United States real property holding corporation and your ownership of our common stock exceeds 5%, or because we are not “regularly traded” on an established securities market, you will be taxed on such disposition generally in the manner as gain that is effectively connected with the conduct of a U.S. trade or business (subject to the provisions under an applicable income tax treaty), except that the branch profits tax generally will not apply.
If you are a Non-U.S. Holder described in (a) above, you will be required to pay tax on a net income basis at the U.S. federal income tax rates applicable to U.S. Holders, and corporate Non-U.S. Holders described in (a) above may be subject to the additional branch profits tax at a 30% rate or such lower rate as may be specified by an applicable income tax treaty. If you are a Non-U.S. Holder described in (b) above, you will be subject to U.S. federal income tax at a flat 30% rate (or such lower rate as may be specified by an applicable income tax treaty) on the net gain derived from the disposition, which gain may be offset by certain U.S.-source capital losses (even though you are not considered a resident of the United States), provided that the Non-U.S. Holder has timely filed U.S. federal income tax returns with respect to such losses. Non-U.S. Holders should consult their tax advisors regarding any applicable income tax treaties that may provide for different rules.
Information reporting requirements and backup withholding
Information returns are required to be filed with the IRS in connection with payments of dividends on our common stock. Unless you comply with certification procedures to establish that you are a non-U.S. Holder, information returns may also be filed with the IRS in connection with the proceeds from a sale or other disposition of our common stock. You may be subject to backup withholding on payments on our common stock or on the proceeds from a sale or other disposition of our common stock unless you comply with certification procedures to establish that you are not a U.S. person or otherwise establish an exemption. You may avoid backup withholding by providing a properly executed applicable IRS Form W-8 certifying your non-U.S. status. Generally, information reporting and backup withholding will not apply to a payment of disposition proceeds to a non-U.S. Holder where the transaction is effected outside the United States through a non-U.S. office of a broker. However, for information reporting purposes, dispositions effected through a non-U.S. office of a broker with substantial U.S. ownership or operations generally will be treated in a manner similar to dispositions effected through a U.S. office of a broker. Non-U.S. holders should consult their tax advisors regarding the application of the information reporting and backup withholding rules to them. Copies of information returns may be made available to the tax authorities of the country in which the non-U.S. holder resides or is incorporated under the provisions of a specific treaty or agreement. Amounts withheld under the backup withholding rules are not additional taxes and may be refunded to you or credited against your U.S. federal income tax liability, provided the required information is timely furnished to the IRS.
Foreign accounts
Sections 1471 through 1474 of the Code (commonly referred to as FATCA) impose a U.S. federal withholding tax of 30% on certain payments to a foreign financial institution (as specifically defined by applicable rules) unless such institution enters into an agreement with the U.S. government to withhold on certain payments and to collect and provide to the U.S. tax authorities substantial information regarding U.S. account holders of such institution (which includes certain equity holders of such institution, as well as certain account holders that are foreign entities with U.S. owners). FATCA also generally imposes a federal withholding tax of 30% on certain payments to a non-financial foreign entity unless such entity provides the withholding agent with either a certification that it does not have any substantial direct or indirect U.S. owners or provides information regarding substantial direct and indirect U.S. owners of the entity. An intergovernmental agreement between the United States and an applicable foreign country may modify these requirements. The withholding tax described above will not apply if the foreign financial institution or non-financial foreign entity otherwise qualifies for an exemption from the rules.
FATCA withholding currently applies to dividends paid on our common stock. FATCA withholding would have applied to the gross proceeds of a disposition of our common stock, but the U.S. Treasury Department has released proposed regulations which, if finalized in their present form, would eliminate the federal withholding tax of 30% applicable to the gross proceeds of a disposition of our common stock. In its preamble
 
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to such proposed regulations, the U.S. Treasury Department stated that taxpayers may generally rely on the proposed regulations until final regulations are issued. Non-U.S. Holders are encouraged to consult with their own tax advisors regarding the possible implications of FATCA on their investment in our common stock.
EACH PROSPECTIVE INVESTOR SHOULD CONSULT ITS OWN TAX ADVISOR REGARDING THE TAX CONSEQUENCES OF PURCHASING, HOLDING, AND DISPOSING OF OUR COMMON STOCK, INCLUDING THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY RECENT OR PROPOSED CHANGE IN APPLICABLE LAW.
 
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Underwriting
Subject to the terms and conditions set forth in the underwriting agreement, dated           , 2021, among us and Jefferies LLC, SVB Leerink LLC and Piper Sandler & Co., as the representatives of the underwriters named below and the joint book-running managers of this offering, we have agreed to sell to the underwriters, and each of the underwriters has agreed, severally and not jointly, to purchase from us, the respective number of shares of common stock shown opposite its name below:
Underwriter
Number of
Shares
Jefferies LLC
SVB Leerink LLC
Piper Sandler & Co.
Total
     
The underwriting agreement provides that the obligations of the several underwriters are subject to certain conditions precedent such as the receipt by the underwriters of officers’ certificates and legal opinions and approval of certain legal matters by their counsel. The underwriting agreement provides that the underwriters will purchase all of the shares of common stock if any of them are purchased. If an underwriter defaults, the underwriting agreement provides that the purchase commitments of the nondefaulting underwriters may be increased or the underwriting agreement may be terminated. We have agreed to indemnify the underwriters and certain of their controlling persons against certain liabilities, including liabilities under the Securities Act, and to contribute to payments that the underwriters may be required to make in respect of those liabilities.
The underwriters have advised us that, following the completion of this offering, they currently intend to make a market in the common stock as permitted by applicable laws and regulations. However, the underwriters are not obligated to do so, and the underwriters may discontinue any market-making activities at any time without notice in their sole discretion. Accordingly, no assurance can be given as to the liquidity of the trading market for the common stock, that you will be able to sell any of the common stock held by you at a particular time or that the prices that you receive when you sell will be favorable.
The underwriters are offering the shares of common stock subject to their acceptance of the shares of common stock from us and subject to prior sale. The underwriters reserve the right to withdraw, cancel or modify offers to the public and to reject orders in whole or in part.
Commission and Expenses
The underwriters have advised us that they propose to offer the shares of common stock to the public at the initial public offering price set forth on the cover page of this prospectus and to certain dealers, which may include the underwriters, at that price less a concession not in excess of $      per share of common stock. No such reduction will change the amount of proceeds to be received by us as set forth on the cover page of this prospectus.
The following table shows the public offering price, the underwriting discounts and commissions that we are to pay the underwriters and the proceeds, before expenses, to us in connection with this offering. Such amounts are shown assuming both no exercise and full exercise of the underwriters’ option to purchase additional shares.
 
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Per Share
Total
Without
Option to
Purchase
Additional
Shares
With
Option to
Purchase
Additional
Shares
Without
Option to
Purchase
Additional
Shares
With
Option to
Purchase
Additional
Shares
Public offering price
$       $       $       $      
Underwriting discounts and commissions paid by us
$ $ $ $
Proceeds to us, before expenses
$ $ $ $
We estimate expenses payable by us in connection with this offering, other than the underwriting discounts and commissions referred to above, will be approximately $250,000. We also have agreed to reimburse the underwriters for certain of their expenses in an amount up to $      .
Listing
Our common stock is listed on The Nasdaq Global Select Market under the trading symbol “ACRS”.
Option to Purchase Additional Shares
We have granted to the underwriters an option, exercisable for 30 days from the date of this prospectus, to purchase, from time to time, in whole or in part, up to an aggregate of           shares from us at the public offering price set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, less underwriting discounts and commissions. If the underwriters exercise this option, each underwriter will be obligated, subject to specified conditions, to purchase a number of additional shares proportionate to that underwriter’s initial purchase commitment as indicated in the table above.
No Sales of Similar Securities
We, our officers, directors and holders of all or substantially all our outstanding capital stock and other securities have agreed, subject to specified exceptions, not to directly or indirectly:

sell, offer, contract or grant any option to sell (including any short sale), pledge, transfer, establish an open “put equivalent position” within the meaning of Rule 16a-l(h) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or

otherwise dispose of any shares of common stock, options or warrants to acquire shares of common stock, or securities exchangeable or exercisable for or convertible into shares of common stock currently or hereafter owned either of record or beneficially, or

publicly announce an intention to do any of the foregoing for a period of 90 days after the date of this prospectus without the prior written consent of the representatives on behalf of the underwriters.
This restriction terminates after the close of trading of the common stock on and including the 90th day after the date of this prospectus.
The representatives may, in their sole discretion and at any time or from time to time before the termination of the 90-day period release all or any portion of the securities subject to lock-up agreements. There are no existing agreements between the underwriters and any of our shareholders who will execute a lock-up agreement, providing consent to the sale of shares prior to the expiration of the lock-up period.
Stabilization
The underwriters have advised us that they, pursuant to Regulation M under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, certain persons participating in the offering may engage in short sale transactions, stabilizing transactions, syndicate covering transactions or the imposition of penalty bids in connection with this offering. These activities may have the effect of stabilizing or maintaining the market price of the common stock at a level above that which might otherwise prevail in the open market. Establishing short sales positions may involve either “covered” short sales or “naked” short sales.
 
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“Covered” short sales are sales made in an amount not greater than the underwriters’ option to purchase additional shares of our common stock in this offering. The underwriters may close out any covered short position by either exercising their option to purchase additional shares of our common stock or purchasing shares of our common stock in the open market. In determining the source of shares to close out the covered short position, the underwriters will consider, among other things, the price of shares available for purchase in the open market as compared to the price at which they may purchase shares through the option to purchase additional shares.
“Naked” short sales are sales in excess of the option to purchase additional shares of our common stock. The underwriters must close out any naked short position by purchasing shares in the open market. A naked short position is more likely to be created if the underwriters are concerned that there may be downward pressure on the price of the shares of our common stock in the open market after pricing that could adversely affect investors who purchase in this offering.
A stabilizing bid is a bid for the purchase of shares of common stock on behalf of the underwriters for the purpose of fixing or maintaining the price of the common stock. A syndicate covering transaction is the bid for or the purchase of shares of common stock on behalf of the underwriters to reduce a short position incurred by the underwriters in connection with the offering. Similar to other purchase transactions, the underwriter’s purchases to cover the syndicate short sales may have the effect of raising or maintaining the market price of our common stock or preventing or retarding a decline in the market price of our common stock. As a result, the price of our common stock may be higher than the price that might otherwise exist in the open market. A penalty bid is an arrangement permitting the underwriters to reclaim the selling concession otherwise accruing to a syndicate member in connection with the offering if the common stock originally sold by such syndicate member are purchased in a syndicate covering transaction and therefore have not been effectively placed by such syndicate member.
Neither we, nor any of the underwriters make any representation or prediction as to the direction or magnitude of any effect that the transactions described above may have on the price of our common stock. The underwriters are not obligated to engage in these activities and, if commenced, any of the activities may be discontinued at any time.
The underwriters may also engage in passive market making transactions in our common stock on The Nasdaq Global Select Market in accordance with Rule 103 of Regulation M during a period before the commencement of offers or sales of shares of our common stock in this offering and extending through the completion of distribution. A passive market maker must display its bid at a price not in excess of the highest independent bid of that security. However, if all independent bids are lowered below the passive market maker’s bid, that bid must then be lowered when specified purchase limits are exceeded.
Electronic Distribution
A prospectus in electronic format may be made available by e-mail or on the web sites or through online services maintained by one or more of the underwriters or their affiliates. In those cases, prospective investors may view offering terms online and may be allowed to place orders online. The underwriters may agree with us to allocate a specific number of shares of common stock for sale to online brokerage account holders. Any such allocation for online distributions will be made by the underwriters on the same basis as other allocations. Other than the prospectus in electronic format, the information on the underwriters’ web sites and any information contained in any other web site maintained by any of the underwriters is not part of this prospectus, has not been approved and/or endorsed by us or the underwriters and should not be relied upon by investors.
Other Activities and Relationships
The underwriters and certain of their affiliates are full service financial institutions engaged in various activities, which may include securities trading, commercial and investment banking, financial advisory, investment management, investment research, principal investment, hedging, financing and brokerage activities. The underwriters and certain of their affiliates have, from time to time, performed, and may in the future perform, various commercial and investment banking and financial advisory services for us and our affiliates, for which they received or will receive customary fees and expenses.
 
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In the ordinary course of their various business activities, the underwriters and certain of their affiliates may make or hold a broad array of investments and actively trade debt and equity securities (or related derivative securities) and financial instruments (including bank loans) for their own account and for the accounts of their customers, and such investment and securities activities may involve securities and/or instruments issued by us and our affiliates. If the underwriters or their respective affiliates have a lending relationship with us, they routinely hedge their credit exposure to us consistent with their customary risk management policies. The underwriters and their respective affiliates may hedge such exposure by entering into transactions which consist of either the purchase of credit default swaps or the creation of short positions in our securities or the securities of our affiliates, including potentially the common stock offered hereby. Any such short positions could adversely affect future trading prices of the common stock offered hereby. The underwriters and certain of their respective affiliates may also communicate independent investment recommendations, market color or trading ideas and/or publish or express independent research views in respect of such securities or instruments and may at any time hold, or recommend to clients that they acquire, long and/or short positions in such securities and instruments.
Disclaimers About Non-U.S. Jurisdictions
Canada
(A)   Resale Restrictions
The distribution of our common stock in Canada is being made only in the provinces of Ontario, Quebec, Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia on a private placement basis exempt from the requirement that we prepare and file a prospectus with the securities regulatory authorities in each province where trades of these securities are made. Any resale of the common stock in Canada must be made under applicable securities laws which may vary depending on the relevant jurisdiction, and which may require resales to be made under available statutory exemptions or under a discretionary exemption granted by the applicable Canadian securities regulatory authority. Purchasers are advised to seek legal advice prior to any resale of the securities.
(B)   Representations of Canadian Purchasers
By purchasing our common stock in Canada and accepting delivery of a purchase confirmation, a purchaser is representing to us and the dealer from whom the purchase confirmation is received that:

the purchaser is entitled under applicable provincial securities laws to purchase the common stock without the benefit of a prospectus qualified under those securities laws as it is an “accredited investor” as defined under National Instrument 45-106 — Prospectus Exemptions or Section 73.3(1) of the Securities Act (Ontario), as applicable,

the purchaser is a “permitted client” as defined in National Instrument 31-103 — Registration Requirements, Exemptions and Ongoing Registrant Obligations,

where required by law, the purchaser is purchasing as principal and not as agent, and

the purchaser has reviewed the text above under Resale Restrictions.
(C)   Conflicts of Interest
Canadian purchasers are hereby notified that certain of the underwriters are relying on the exemption set out in section 3A.3 or 3A.4, if applicable, of National Instrument 33-105 — Underwriting Conflicts from having to provide certain conflict of interest disclosure in this document.
(D)   Statutory Rights of Action
Securities legislation in certain provinces or territories of Canada may provide a purchaser with remedies for rescission or damages if the prospectus supplement (including any amendment thereto) such as this document contains a misrepresentation, provided that the remedies for rescission or damages are exercised by the purchaser within the time limit prescribed by the securities legislation of the purchaser’s province or territory. The purchaser of these securities in Canada should refer to any applicable provisions of the securities legislation of the purchaser’s province or territory for particulars of these rights or consult with a legal advisor.
 
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(E)   Enforcement of Legal Rights
All of our directors and officers as well as the experts named herein may be located outside of Canada and, as a result, it may not be possible for Canadian purchasers to effect service of process within Canada upon us or those persons. All or a substantial portion of our assets and the assets of those persons may be located outside of Canada and, as a result, it may not be possible to satisfy a judgment against us or those persons in Canada or to enforce a judgment obtained in Canadian courts against us or those persons outside of Canada.
(F)   Taxation and Eligibility for Investment
Canadian purchasers of our common stock should consult their own legal and tax advisors with respect to the tax consequences of an investment in the common stock in their particular circumstances and about the eligibility of the common stock for investment by the purchaser under relevant Canadian legislation.
Australia
This prospectus supplement is not a disclosure document for the purposes of Australia’s Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) of Australia, or Corporations Act, has not been lodged with the Australian Securities & Investments Commission and is only directed to the categories of exempt persons set out below. Accordingly, if you receive this prospectus supplement in Australia:
You confirm and warrant that you are either:

a “sophisticated investor” under section 708(8)(a) or (b) of the Corporations Act;

a “sophisticated investor” under section 708(8)(c) or (d) of the Corporations Act and that you have provided an accountant’s certificate to the Company which complies with the requirements of section 708(8)(c)(i) or (ii) of the Corporations Act and related regulations before the offer has been made;

a person associated with the Company under Section 708(12) of the Corporations Act; or

a “professional investor” within the meaning of section 708(11)(a) or (b) of the Corporations Act.

To the extent that you are unable to confirm or warrant that you are an exempt sophisticated investor, associated person or professional investor under the Corporations Act any offer made to you under this prospectus supplement is void and incapable of acceptance.
You warrant and agree that you will not offer any of the securities issued to you pursuant to prospectus supplement for resale in Australia within 12 months of those securities being issued unless any such resale offer is exempt from the requirement to issue a disclosure document under section 708 of the Corporations Act.
European Economic Area
In relation to each Member State of the European Economic Area (each, a “Relevant State”), no shares have been offered or will be offered pursuant to the offering to the public in that Relevant State prior to the publication of a prospectus in relation to the shares which have been approved by the competent authority in that Relevant State or, where appropriate, approved in another Relevant State and notified to the competent authority in that Relevant State, all in accordance with the Prospectus Regulation, except that the shares may be offered to the public in that Relevant State at any time:
(a)
to any legal entity which is a “qualified investor” as defined under Article 2 of the Prospectus Regulation;
(b)
to fewer than 150 natural or legal persons (other than qualified investors as defined under Article 2 of the Prospectus Regulation), subject to obtaining the prior consent of representatives for any such offer; or
(c)
in any other circumstances falling within Article 1(4) of the Prospectus Regulation,
provided that no such offer of the shares shall require us or any of the representatives to publish a prospectus pursuant to Article 3 of the Prospectus Regulation or supplement a prospectus pursuant to Article 23 of the Prospectus Regulation.
For the purposes of this provision, the expression “offer to the public” in relation to the shares in any Relevant State means the communication in any form and by any means of sufficient information on the
 
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terms of the offer and any shares to be offered so as to enable an investor to decide to purchase or subscribe for any shares, and the expression “Prospectus Regulation” means Regulation (EU) 2017/1129.
MiFID II Product Governance
Any distributor subject to MiFID II that is offering, selling or recommending the common stock is responsible for undertaking its own target market assessment in respect of the common stock and determining its own distribution channels for the purposes of the MiFID product governance rules under Commission Delegated Directive (EU) 2017/593 (“Delegated Directive”). Neither we nor the underwriters make any representations or warranties as to a distributor’s compliance with the Delegated Directive.
Hong Kong
No securities have been offered or sold, and no securities may be offered or sold, in Hong Kong, by means of any document, other than to persons whose ordinary business is to buy or sell shares or debentures, whether as principal or agent; or to “professional investors” as defined in the Securities and Futures Ordinance (Cap. 571) of Hong Kong (“SFO”) and any rules made under that Ordinance; or in other circumstances which do not result in the document being a “prospectus” as defined in the Companies Ordinance (Cap. 32) of Hong Kong (“CO”) or which do not constitute an offer or invitation to the public for the purpose of the CO or the SFO. No document, invitation or advertisement relating to the securities has been issued or may be issued or may be in the possession of any person for the purpose of issue (in each case whether in Hong Kong or elsewhere), which is directed at, or the contents of which are likely to be accessed or read by, the public of Hong Kong (except if permitted under the securities laws of Hong Kong) other than with respect to securities which are or are intended to be disposed of only to persons outside Hong Kong or only to “professional investors” as defined in the SFO and any rules made under that Ordinance.
This prospectus supplement has not been registered with the Registrar of Companies in Hong Kong. Accordingly, this prospectus supplement may not be issued, circulated or distributed in Hong Kong, and the securities may not be offered for subscription to members of the public in Hong Kong. Each person acquiring the securities will be required, and is deemed by the acquisition of the securities, to confirm that he is aware of the restriction on offers of the securities described in this prospectus supplement and the relevant offering documents and that he is not acquiring, and has not been offered any securities in circumstances that contravene any such restrictions.
Israel
This document does not constitute a prospectus under the Israeli Securities Law, 5728-1968, or the Securities Law, and has not been filed with or approved by the Israel Securities Authority. In Israel, this prospectus is being distributed only to, and is directed only at, and any offer of the common stockis directed only at, (i) a limited number of persons in accordance with the Israeli Securities Law and (ii) investors listed in the first addendum, or the Addendum, to the Israeli Securities Law, consisting primarily of joint investment in trust funds, provident funds, insurance companies, banks, portfolio managers, investment advisors, members of the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, underwriters, venture capital funds, entities with equity in excess of NIS 50 million and “qualified individuals,” each as defined in the Addendum (as it may be amended from time to time), collectively referred to as qualified investors (in each case, purchasing for their own account or, where permitted under the Addendum, for the accounts of their clients who are investors listed in the Addendum). Qualified investors are required to submit written confirmation that they fall within the scope of the Addendum, are aware of the meaning of same and agree to it.
Japan
The offering has not been and will not be registered under the Financial Instruments and Exchange Law of Japan (Law No. 25 of 1948 of Japan, as amended), or FIEL, and the Initial Purchaser will not offer or sell any securities, directly or indirectly, in Japan or to, or for the benefit of, any resident of Japan (which term as used herein means any person resident in Japan, including any corporation or other entity organized under the laws of Japan), or to others for re-offering or resale, directly or indirectly, in Japan or to, or for the benefit of, any resident of Japan, except pursuant to an exemption from the registration requirements of, and otherwise in compliance with, the FIEL and any other applicable laws, regulations and ministerial guidelines of Japan.
Singapore
This prospectus supplement has not been and will not be lodged or registered as a prospectus with the Monetary Authority of Singapore. Accordingly, this prospectus supplement and any other document or material
 
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in connection with the offer or sale, or invitation for subscription or purchase, of the common stock may not be circulated or distributed, nor may the common stock be offered or sold, or be made the subject of an invitation for subscription or purchase, whether directly or indirectly, to persons in Singapore other than (i) to an institutional investor under Section 274 of the Securities and Futures Act, Chapter 289 of Singapore (the “SFA”), (ii) to a relevant person pursuant to Section 275(1), or any person pursuant to Section 275(1A), and in accordance with the conditions specified in Section 275, of the SFA, or (iii) otherwise pursuant to, and in accordance with the conditions of, any other applicable provision of the SFA.
Where the common stock are subscribed or purchased under Section 275 of the SFA by a relevant person which is:
(a)
a corporation (which is not an accredited investor (as defined in Section 4A of the SFA)) the sole business of which is to hold investments and the entire share capital of which is owned by one or more individuals, each of whom is an accredited investor; or
(b)
a trust (where the trustee is not an accredited investor) whose sole purpose is to hold investments and each beneficiary of the trust is an individual who is an accredited investor,
securities (as defined in Section 239(1) of the SFA) of that corporation or the beneficiaries’ rights and interest (howsoever described) in that trust shall not be transferred within six months after that corporation or that trust has acquired the common stock pursuant to an offer made under Section 275 of the SFA except:
(i)
to an institutional investor or to a relevant person defined in Section 275(2) of the SFA, or to any person arising from an offer referred to in Section 275(1A) or Section 276(4)(i)(B) of the SFA;
(ii)
where no consideration is or will be given for the transfer;
(iii)
where the transfer is by operation of law;
(iv)
as specified in Section 276(7) of the SFA; or
(v)
as specified in Regulation 32 of the Securities and Futures (Offers of Investments) (Shares and Debentures) Regulations 2005 of Singapore.
Switzerland
The securities may not be publicly offered in Switzerland and will not be listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange (“SIX”) or on any other stock exchange or regulated trading facility in Switzerland. This prospectus supplement has been prepared without regard to the disclosure standards for issuance prospectuses under art. 652a or art. 1156 of the Swiss Code of Obligations or the disclosure standards for listing prospectuses under art. 27 ff. of the SIX Listing Rules or the listing rules of any other stock exchange or regulated trading facility in Switzerland. Neither this prospectus supplement nor any other offering or marketing material relating to the securities or the offering may be publicly distributed or otherwise made publicly available in Switzerland.
Neither this prospectus supplement nor any other offering or marketing material relating to the offering, the Company or the securities have been or will be filed with or approved by any Swiss regulatory authority. In particular, this prospectus supplement will not be filed with, and the offer of securities will not be supervised by, the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority FINMA, and the offer of securities has not been and will not be authorized under the Swiss Federal Act on Collective Investment Schemes (“CISA”). The investor protection afforded to acquirers of interests in collective investment schemes under the CISA does not extend to acquirers of securities.
United Kingdom
No shares have been offered or will be offered pursuant to the offering to the public in the United Kingdom prior to the publication of a prospectus in relation to the Shares which has been approved by the Financial Conduct Authority, except that the shares may be offered to the public in the United Kingdom at any time:
(a)
to any legal entity which is a qualified investor as defined under Article 2 of the UK Prospectus Regulation;
(b)
to fewer than 150 natural or legal persons (other than qualified investors as defined under Article 2 of the UK Prospectus Regulation), subject to obtaining the prior consent of the representatives for any such offer; or
 
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(c)
in any other circumstances falling within Section 86 of the FSMA,
provided that no such offer of the shares shall require the Issuer or any Manager to publish a prospectus pursuant to Section 85 of the FSMA or supplement a prospectus pursuant to Article 23 of the UK Prospectus Regulation. For the purposes of this provision, the expression an “offer to the public” in relation to the shares in the United Kingdom means the communication in any form and by any means of sufficient information on the terms of the offer and any shares to be offered so as to enable an investor to decide to purchase or subscribe for any shares and the expression “UK Prospectus Regulation” means Regulation (EU) 2017/1129 as it forms part of domestic law by virtue of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018.
 
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LEGAL MATTERS
The validity of the shares of common stock offered hereby will be passed upon for us by Cooley LLP, Reston, Virginia. Certain legal matters in connection with this offering will be passed upon for the underwriters by Goodwin Procter LLP, New York, New York.
EXPERTS
The financial statements incorporated in this prospectus supplement by reference to the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020 have been so incorporated in reliance on the report of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, an independent registered public accounting firm, given on the authority of said firm as experts in auditing and accounting.
WHERE YOU CAN FIND MORE INFORMATION
We file annual, quarterly and current reports, proxy statements and other information with the SEC. Our SEC filings are available to the public over the Internet at the SEC’s website at http://www.sec.gov. Copies of certain information filed by us with the SEC are also available on our website at http://www.aclaristx.com. Our website is not a part of this prospectus supplement and is not incorporated by reference in this prospectus supplement.
This prospectus supplement is part of a registration statement that we filed with the SEC. The registration statement contains more information than this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus regarding us and the securities, including certain exhibits and schedules. You can obtain a copy of the registration statement from the SEC at the address listed above or from the SEC’s internet site.
 
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INCORPORATION OF CERTAIN INFORMATION BY REFERENCE
The SEC allows us to incorporate by reference in this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus much of the information we file with the SEC, which means that we can disclose important information to you by referring you to those publicly available documents. The information that we incorporate by reference in this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus is considered to be part of this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus. Because we are incorporating by reference future filings with the SEC, this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus is continually updated and those future filings may modify or supersede some of the information included or incorporated in this prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus. This means that you must look at all of the SEC filings that we incorporate by reference to determine if any of the statements in this prospectus supplement, the accompanying prospectus or any document previously incorporated by reference have been modified or superseded. This prospectus supplement and the accompanying prospectus incorporate by reference the documents listed below (File No. 001-37581) and any future filings we make with the SEC under Sections 13(a), 13(c), 14 or 15(d) of the Exchange Act (in each case, other than those documents or the portions of those documents not deemed to be filed) until the offering of the securities under the registration statement is terminated or completed:



our Current Reports on Form 8-K filed with the SEC on January 19, 2021, January 22, 2021, May 20, 2021, June 3, 2021 and June 8, 2021, to the extent the information in such reports is filed and not furnished;

our Proxy Statement filed with the SEC on April 22, 2021, to the extent the information therein is filed and not furnished; and

the description of our common stock contained in our Registration Statement on Form 8-A, filed with the SEC on October 2, 2015, including any amendments or reports filed for the purposes of updating this description.
You may request a copy of these filings, at no cost, by writing or telephoning us at the following address or phone number:
Aclaris Therapeutics, Inc.
Attn: Kamil Ali-Jackson, Chief Legal Officer
640 Lee Road, Suite 200
Wayne, Pennsylvania 19087
(484) 324-7933
 
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PROSPECTUS
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Common Stock
Preferred Stock
Debt Securities
Warrants
We or a selling securityholder may, from time to time, offer and sell any combination of the securities described in this prospectus, either individually or in combination, at prices and on terms described in one or more supplements to this prospectus. We or a selling securityholder may also offer common stock or preferred stock on conversion of debt securities, common stock on conversion of preferred stock, or common stock, preferred stock, or debt securities on exercise of warrants.
This prospectus describes some of the general terms that may apply to an offering of our securities. Each time we or a selling securityholder sells securities pursuant to this prospectus, we will provide the specific terms of these offerings and securities in one or more supplements to this prospectus. We may also authorize one or more free writing prospectuses to be provided to you in connection with these offerings. The prospectus supplement and any related free writing prospectus may also add, update, or change information contained in this prospectus. You should carefully read this prospectus, the applicable prospectus supplement, and any related free writing prospectus, and the documents incorporated by reference, before buying any of the securities being offered.
Securities may be sold by us or selling securityholders through underwriters or dealers, directly to purchasers, or through designated agents from time to time. For additional information on the methods of sale, you should refer to the section titled “Plan of Distribution” in this prospectus and in the applicable prospectus supplement. If any underwriters are involved in the sale of any securities with respect to which this prospectus is being delivered, the names of such underwriters and any applicable discounts or commissions and options to purchase additional securities will be listed in a prospectus supplement. The price to the public of such securities and the net proceeds we expect to receive from such sale will also be listed in a prospectus supplement. Unless the applicable prospectus supplement provides otherwise, we will not receive any proceeds from the sale of securities by selling securityholders.
Our common stock is listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “ACRS.” On May 19, 2021, the last reported sale price of our common stock was $22.97 per share. The applicable prospectus supplement will contain information, where applicable, as to other listings, if any, on the Nasdaq Global Select Market or other securities exchange of the securities covered by the applicable prospectus supplement.
Investing in our securities involves a high degree of risk. You should review carefully the risks and uncertainties described in the section titled “Risk Factors” included in, or incorporated by reference into, the applicable prospectus supplement and in any free writing prospectuses we have authorized for use in connection with a specific offering, and under similar headings in the other documents that are incorporated by reference into this prospectus.
This prospectus may not be used to consummate a sale of securities unless accompanied by a prospectus supplement.
Neither the Securities and Exchange Commission nor any state securities commission has approved or disapproved of these securities or determined if this prospectus is truthful or complete. Any representation to the contrary is a criminal offense.
The date of this prospectus is May 20, 2021.

 
TABLE OF CONTENTS
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ABOUT THIS PROSPECTUS
This prospectus is part of an automatic registration statement on Form S-3 that we filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, using a “shelf” registration process as a “well-known seasoned issuer” as defined in Rule 405 under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Securities Act. Under this shelf registration statement, from time to time, we or selling securityholders may sell, in one or more offerings, common stock, preferred stock, various series of debt securities, or warrants to purchase any of such securities, either individually or in combination with other securities described in this prospectus. There is no limit on the aggregate amount of the securities that we or selling securityholders may offer pursuant to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part. This prospectus provides you with a general description of the securities we or selling securityholders may offer.
Each time we or selling securityholders sell any type or series of securities under this prospectus, we will provide a prospectus supplement that will include more specific information about the terms of that offering. We may also authorize one or more free writing prospectuses to be provided to you that may contain material information relating to these offerings. In a prospectus supplement or free writing prospectus, we may also add, update, or change any of the information contained in this prospectus or in the documents we have incorporated by reference into this prospectus. This prospectus, together with the applicable prospectus supplement, any related free writing prospectus, and the documents incorporated by reference into this prospectus and the applicable prospectus supplement, will include all material information relating to the applicable offering. Before buying any of the securities being offered, you should carefully read both this prospectus and the applicable prospectus supplement and any related free writing prospectus, together with the documents incorporated by reference herein and the additional information described in the section titled “Where You Can Find More Information.”
This prospectus contains estimates and information concerning our industry, including market size and growth rates of the markets in which we participate, that are based on industry publications and reports. This information involves many assumptions and limitations, and you are cautioned not to give undue weight to these estimates. The industry in which we operate is subject to a high degree of uncertainty and risk due to a variety of factors, including those described in the section titled “Risk Factors,” that could cause results to differ materially from those expressed in these publications and reports.
This prospectus includes summaries of certain provisions contained in some of the documents described in this prospectus, but reference is made to the actual documents for complete information. All of the summaries are qualified in their entirety by the actual documents. Copies of some of the documents referred to herein have been filed, will be filed, or will be incorporated by reference as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, and you may obtain copies of those documents as described in the section titled “Where You Can Find More Information.”
 
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SUMMARY
This summary highlights selected information from this prospectus and does not contain all of the information that you need to consider in making your investment decision. You should carefully read the entire prospectus, the applicable prospectus supplement and any related free writing prospectus, including the risks of investing in our securities discussed under the heading “Risk Factors” contained in the applicable prospectus supplement and any related free writing prospectus, and under similar headings in the other documents that are incorporated by reference into this prospectus. You should also carefully read the information incorporated by reference into this prospectus, including our financial statements, and the exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part.
Unless the context indicates otherwise, references in this prospectus to “Aclaris,” “company,” “we,” “us” and “our” refer to Aclaris Therapeutics, Inc. and its consolidated subsidiaries.
Company Overview
We are a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing novel drug candidates for immuno-inflammatory diseases. In addition to developing our novel drug candidates, we are pursuing strategic alternatives, including identifying and consummating transactions with third-party partners, to further develop, obtain marketing approval for and/or commercialize our novel drug candidates.
Corporate Information
We were incorporated under the laws of the State of Delaware in July 2012. Our principal executive offices are located at 640 Lee Road, Suite 200, Wayne, PA 19087. Our telephone number is (484) 324-7933. Our common stock is listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “ACRS.”
Our internet website address is www.aclaristx.com. We do not incorporate the information on or accessible through our website into this prospectus. The information contained on, or that can be accessed through, our website is not a part of this prospectus. We have included our website address in this prospectus solely as an inactive textual reference.
“Aclaris”, the Aclaris logo, ESKATA and KINect and our other trademarks or service marks appearing in this prospectus or incorporated herein by reference are our property. This prospectus and the information incorporated herein by reference contains additional trade names, trademarks and service marks of others, which are the property of their respective owners.
THE SECURITIES WE MAY OFFER
We or selling securityholders may offer shares of our common stock or preferred stock, various series of debt securities, or warrants to purchase any of such securities, either individually or in combination, from time to time under this prospectus, together with the applicable prospectus supplement and any related free writing prospectus, at prices and on terms to be determined by market conditions at the time of any offering. We or selling securityholders may also offer common stock or preferred stock on conversion of debt securities, common stock on conversion of preferred stock, or common stock, preferred stock, or debt securities on exercise of warrants. This prospectus provides you with a general description of the securities we or selling securityholders may offer. Each time we or selling securityholders offer a type or series of securities under this prospectus, we will provide a prospectus supplement that will describe the specific amounts, prices, and other important terms of the securities, including, to the extent applicable:

designation or classification;

aggregate principal amount or aggregate offering price;

maturity date;

original issue discount;

rates and times of payment of interest or dividends;

redemption, conversion, exercise, exchange, or sinking fund terms;
 
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ranking;

restrictive covenants;

voting or other rights;

conversion or exchange prices or rates and any provisions for changes to or adjustments in the conversion or exchange prices or rates and in the securities or other property receivable on conversion or exchange; and

a discussion of material U.S. federal income tax considerations.
The applicable prospectus supplement and any related free writing prospectus that we may authorize to be provided to you may also add, update, or change any of the information contained in this prospectus or in the documents we have incorporated by reference.
We or selling securityholders may sell the securities directly to investors or to or through agents, underwriters, or dealers. We, selling securityholders, and our agents, underwriters, or dealers reserve the right to accept or reject all or part of any proposed purchase of securities. If we or selling securityholders do offer securities to or through agents, underwriters, or dealers, we will include in the applicable prospectus supplement:

the names of those agents, underwriters, or dealers;

applicable fees, discounts, and commissions to be paid to them;

details regarding options to purchase additional securities, if any; and

the net proceeds to us, if any.
This prospectus may not be used to consummate a sale of securities unless it is accompanied by a prospectus supplement.
From time to time, we may issue shares of our common stock. The selling stockholders may offer shares of our common stock to the extent such shares were issued and outstanding, or issuable upon exercise or conversion of securities issued and outstanding, prior to the original date of filing of the registration statement to which this prospectus relates. The holders of our common stock are entitled to one vote for each share held of record on all matters submitted to a vote of stockholders and do not have cumulative voting rights. Subject to preferences that may be applicable to any outstanding shares of preferred stock, the holders of our common stock are entitled to receive ratably such dividends as may be declared by our board of directors out of legally available funds. Upon our liquidation, dissolution or winding up, holders of our common stock are entitled to share ratably in all assets remaining after payment of liabilities and the liquidation preferences of any then outstanding shares of preferred stock. Our common stock does not carry any preemptive rights enabling a holder to subscribe for, or receive shares of, any class of our common stock or any other securities convertible into shares of any class of our common stock, or any redemption rights.
Preferred Stock
From time to time, we may issue shares of our preferred stock, in one or more series. Under our certificate of incorporation, our board of directors has the authority, without further action by the stockholders (unless such stockholder action is required by applicable law or the rules of any stock exchange or market on which our securities are then traded), to designate up to 10,000,000 shares of preferred stock in one or more series and to determine the designations, voting powers, preferences and rights of each series of the preferred stock, as well as the qualifications, limitations or restrictions thereof, including dividend rights, conversion rights, preemptive rights, terms of redemption or repurchase, liquidation preferences, sinking fund terms and the number of shares constituting any series or the designation of any series, any or all of which may be greater than the rights of the common stock. Any convertible preferred stock we may issue will be convertible into our common stock or exchangeable for our other securities. Conversion may be mandatory or at the holder’s option and would be at prescribed conversion rates.
 
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If we sell any series of preferred stock under this prospectus, we will fix the designations, voting powers, preferences and rights of such series of preferred stock, as well as the qualifications, limitations or restrictions thereof, in the certificate of designation relating to that series. We will file as an exhibit to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from reports that we file with the SEC, the form of any certificate of designation that describes the terms of the series of preferred stock that we are offering before the issuance of the related series of preferred stock. We urge you to read the applicable prospectus supplement (and any free writing prospectus that we may authorize to be provided to you) related to the series of preferred stock being offered, as well as the complete certificate of designation that contains the terms of the applicable series of preferred stock.
Debt Securities
From time to time, we may issue debt securities, in one or more series, as either senior or subordinated debt or as senior or subordinated convertible debt. The senior debt securities will rank equally with any other unsecured and unsubordinated debt. The subordinated debt securities will be subordinate and junior in right of payment, to the extent and in the manner described in the instrument governing the debt, to all of our senior indebtedness. Convertible debt securities will be convertible into or exchangeable for our common stock or other securities. Conversion may be mandatory or at your option, and would be at prescribed conversion rates.
Any debt securities issued under this prospectus will be issued under one or more documents called indentures, which are contracts between us and a national banking association or other eligible party, as trustee. In this prospectus, we have summarized certain general features of the debt securities in the section titled “Description of Debt Securities.” We urge you to read the applicable prospectus supplement and any free writing prospectus that we may authorize to be provided to you related to the series of debt securities being offered, as well as the complete indentures that contain the terms of the debt securities. A form of indenture has been filed as an exhibit to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, and supplemental indentures and forms of debt securities containing the terms of the debt securities being offered will be filed as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part or will be incorporated by reference from reports that we file with the SEC.
Warrants
From time to time, we may issue warrants for the purchase of common stock, preferred stock, or debt securities in one or more series. We may issue warrants independently or in combination with common stock, preferred stock, or debt securities. In this prospectus, we have summarized certain general features of the warrants in the section titled “Description of Warrants.” We urge you to read the applicable prospectus supplement and any free writing prospectus that we may authorize to be provided to you related to the particular series of warrants being offered, as well as the complete warrant agreements and warrant certificates that contain the terms of the warrants. We have filed forms of the warrant agreements and forms of warrant certificates containing the terms of the warrants that may be offered as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part. We will file as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from reports that we file with the SEC, the form of warrant or the warrant agreement and warrant certificate, as applicable, that contain the terms of the particular series of warrants we are offering, and any supplemental agreements, before the issuance of such warrants.
Any warrants issued under this prospectus may be evidenced by warrant certificates. Warrants may be issued under an applicable warrant agreement that we enter into with a warrant agent. We will indicate the name and address of the warrant agent, if applicable, in the prospectus supplement relating to the particular series of warrants being offered.
Selling Securityholders
Selling securityholders are persons or entities that, directly or indirectly, have acquired or will from time to time acquire from us, our securities. Information about selling securityholders, if any, will be set forth in a prospectus supplement. See the section entitled “Selling Securityholders.”
 
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RISK FACTORS
Investing in our securities involves a high degree of risk. You should carefully review the risks and uncertainties described below and under the heading “Risk Factors” contained in the applicable prospectus supplement and any related free writing prospectus, and under similar headings in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020, as updated by our annual, quarterly and other reports and documents that are incorporated by reference into this prospectus, before deciding whether to purchase any of the securities being registered pursuant to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part. Each of the risk factors could adversely affect our business, operating results and financial condition, as well as adversely affect the value of an investment in our securities, and the occurrence of any of these risks might cause you to lose all or part of your investment. Additional risks not presently known to us or that we currently believe are immaterial may also significantly impair our business operations.
 
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SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This prospectus and the documents incorporated by reference contain forward-looking statements. These are based on our management’s current beliefs, expectations and assumptions about future events, conditions and results and on information currently available to us. Discussions containing these forward-looking statements may be found, among other places, in the Sections entitled “Business,” “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” incorporated by reference from our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K, as well as any amendments thereto, filed with the SEC.
Any statements in this prospectus, or incorporated herein, about our expectations, beliefs, plans, objectives, assumptions or future events or performance are not historical facts and are forward-looking statements. Within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or the Exchange Act, these forward-looking statements include statements regarding:

our plans to develop our drug candidates;

the timing of our planned clinical trials of our drug candidates and the reporting of the results from these trials;

the clinical utility of our drug candidates;

our plans and expectations related to manufacturing capabilities and strategy;

our expectations regarding coverage and reimbursement of our drug candidates, if approved;

the timing of our regulatory filings and approvals for our drug candidates;

our intellectual property position;

our plans to pursue strategic alternatives, including identifying and consummating transactions with third-party partners, to further develop, obtain marketing approval for and/or commercialize our drug candidates, and earn revenue from such arrangements;

our expectations regarding competition;

our expectations regarding our continued reliance on third parties;

the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on our business;

our expectations regarding our use of capital; and

our estimates regarding future revenue, expenses and needs for additional financing.
In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by the words “may,” “might,” “can,” “will,” “to be,” “could,” “would,” “should,” “expect,” “intend,” “plan,” “objective,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “predict,” “project,” “potential,” “likely,” “continue” and “ongoing,” or the negative of these terms, or other comparable terminology intended to identify statements about the future, although not all forward-looking statements contain these words. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from the information expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements.
You should refer to the “Risk Factors” section contained in the applicable prospectus supplement and any related free writing prospectus, and under similar headings in the other documents that are incorporated by reference into this prospectus, for a discussion of important factors that may cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by our forward-looking statements. Given these risks, uncertainties and other factors, many of which are beyond our control, we cannot assure you that the forward-looking statements in this prospectus will prove to be accurate, and you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Furthermore, if our forward-looking statements prove to be inaccurate, the inaccuracy may be material. In light of the significant uncertainties in these forward-looking statements, you should not regard these statements as a representation or warranty by us or any other person that we will achieve our objectives and plans in any specified time frame, or at all.
 
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Except as required by law, we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements publicly, or to revise any forward-looking statements to reflect events or developments occurring after the date of this prospectus, even if new information becomes available in the future.
 
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USE OF PROCEEDS
Except as described in any applicable prospectus supplement or in any free writing prospectuses we have authorized for use in connection with a specific offering, we currently intend to use the net proceeds from the sale of securities under this prospectus for general corporate purposes, including working capital and capital expenditures. We will set forth in the applicable prospectus supplement our intended use for the net proceeds received from the sale of any securities. Unless otherwise specified in the applicable prospectus supplement, we will not receive any proceeds from the sale of securities by selling securityholders.
 
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DESCRIPTION OF CAPITAL STOCK
The following description of our capital stock and provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws are summaries. You should also refer to the amended and restated certificate of incorporation and the amended and restated bylaws, which are filed as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is part.
General
Under our amended and restated certificate of incorporation we are authorized to issue up to 100,000,000 shares of common stock, $0.00001 par value per share, and 10,000,000 shares of preferred stock, $0.00001 par value per share, all of which shares of preferred stock are undesignated. Our board of directors may establish the rights and preferences of the preferred stock from time to time. As of March 31, 2021, we had outstanding 52,081,729 shares of common stock.
Common Stock
Voting Rights
Each holder of our common stock is entitled to one vote for each share on all matters submitted to a vote of the stockholders, including the election of directors. Under our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws, our stockholders do not have cumulative voting rights. Because of this, the holders of a majority of the shares of common stock entitled to vote in any election of directors can elect all of the directors standing for election, if they should so choose.
Dividends
Subject to preferences that may be applicable to any then-outstanding preferred stock, holders of common stock are entitled to receive ratably those dividends, if any, as may be declared from time to time by the board of directors out of legally available funds.
Liquidation
In the event of our liquidation, dissolution or winding up, holders of common stock will be entitled to share ratably in the net assets legally available for distribution to stockholders after the payment of all of our debts and other liabilities and the satisfaction of any liquidation preference granted to the holders of any then-outstanding shares of preferred stock.
Rights and Preferences
Holders of common stock have no preemptive, conversion or subscription rights and there are no redemption or sinking fund provisions applicable to the common stock. The rights, preferences and privileges of the holders of common stock are subject to, and may be adversely affected by, the rights of the holders of shares of any series of preferred stock that we may designate in the future.
Preferred Stock
Pursuant to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, our board of directors has the authority, without further action by the stockholders (unless such stockholder action is required by applicable law or stock exchange listing rules), to designate and issue up to 10,000,000 shares of preferred stock in one or more series, to establish from time to time the number of shares to be included in each such series, to fix the designations, powers, preferences, privileges and relative participating, optional or special rights and the qualifications, limitations or restrictions thereof, including dividend rights, conversion rights, voting rights, terms of redemption and liquidation preferences, any or all of which may be greater than the rights of the common stock, and to increase or decrease the number of shares of any such series, but not below the number of shares of such series then outstanding.
 
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Our board of directors, without stockholder approval, can issue preferred stock with voting, conversion or other rights that could adversely affect the voting power and other rights of the holders of common stock. Preferred stock could be issued quickly with terms designed to delay or prevent a change in control of our company or make removal of management more difficult. Additionally, the issuance of preferred stock may have the effect of decreasing the market price of the common stock and may adversely affect the voting power of holders of common stock and reduce the likelihood that common stockholders will receive dividend payments and payments upon liquidation.
Our board of directors will fix the designations, voting powers, preferences and rights, as well as the qualifications, limitations or restrictions thereof, of the preferred stock of each series that we offer under this prospectus and applicable prospectus supplements in the certificate of designation relating to that series. We will file as an exhibit to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from reports that we file with the SEC, the form of any certificate of designation that describes the terms of the series of preferred stock we are offering before the issuance of that series of preferred stock. This description will include:

the title and stated value;

the number of shares we are offering;

the liquidation preference per share;

the purchase price per share;

the dividend rate per share, dividend period and payment dates and method of calculation for dividends;

whether dividends will be cumulative or non-cumulative and, if cumulative, the date from which dividends will accumulate;

our right, if any, to defer payment of dividends and the maximum length of any such deferral period;

the procedures for any auction and remarketing, if any;

the provisions for a sinking fund, if any;

the provisions for redemption or repurchase, if applicable, and any restrictions on our ability to exercise those redemption and repurchase rights;

any listing of the preferred stock on any securities exchange or market;

whether the preferred stock will be convertible into our common stock or other securities of ours, including depositary shares and warrants, and, if applicable, the conversion period, the conversion price, or how it will be calculated, and under what circumstances it may be adjusted;

whether the preferred stock will be exchangeable into debt securities, and, if applicable, the exchange period, the exchange price, or how it will be calculated, and under what circumstances it may be adjusted;

voting rights, if any, of the preferred stock;

preemption rights, if any;

restrictions on transfer, sale or other assignment, if any;

whether interests in the preferred stock will be represented by depositary shares;

a discussion of any material or special U.S. federal income tax considerations applicable to the preferred stock;

the relative ranking and preferences of the preferred stock as to dividend rights and rights if we liquidate, dissolve or wind up our affairs;

any limitations on issuances of any class or series of preferred stock ranking senior to or on a parity with the series of preferred stock being issued as to dividend rights and rights if we liquidate, dissolve or wind up our affairs; and
 
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any other specific terms, rights, preferences, privileges, qualifications or restrictions of the preferred stock.
The General Corporation Law of the State of Delaware, the state of our incorporation, or the DGCL, provides that the holders of preferred stock will have the right to vote separately as a class (or, in some cases, as a series) on an amendment to our certificate of incorporation if the amendment would change the par value or, unless the certificate of incorporation provided otherwise, the number of authorized shares of the class or change the powers, preferences or special rights of the class or series so as to adversely affect the class or series, as the case may be. This right is in addition to any voting rights that may be provided for in the applicable certificate of designation.
Anti-Takeover Provisions
Section 203 of the Delaware General Corporation Law
We are subject to Section 203 of the DGCL which prohibits a Delaware corporation from engaging in any business combination with any interested stockholder for a period of three years after the date that such stockholder became an interested stockholder, with the following exceptions:

before such date, the board of directors of the corporation approved either the business combination or the transaction that resulted in the stockholder becoming an interested stockholder;

upon completion of the transaction that resulted in the stockholder becoming an interested stockholder, the interested stockholder owned at least 85% of the voting stock of the corporation outstanding at the time the transaction began, excluding for purposes of determining the voting stock outstanding, but not the outstanding voting stock owned by the interested stockholder, those shares owned (i) by persons who are directors and also officers and (ii) employee stock plans in which employee participants do not have the right to determine confidentially whether shares held subject to the plan will be tendered in a tender or exchange offer; or

on or after such date, the business combination is approved by the board of directors and authorized at an annual or special meeting of the stockholders, and not by written consent, by the affirmative vote of at least 6623% of the outstanding voting stock that is not owned by the interested stockholder.
In general, Section 203 defines a “business combination” to include the following:

any merger or consolidation involving the corporation and the interested stockholder;

any sale, transfer, pledge or other disposition of 10% or more of the assets of the corporation involving the interested stockholder;

subject to certain exceptions, any transaction that results in the issuance or transfer by the corporation of any stock of the corporation to the interested stockholder;

any transaction involving the corporation that has the effect of increasing the proportionate share of the stock or any class or series of the corporation beneficially owned by the interested stockholder; or

the receipt by the interested stockholder of the benefit of any loans, advances, guarantees, pledges or other financial benefits by or through the corporation.
In general, Section 203 defines an “interested stockholder” as an entity or person who, together with the person’s affiliates and associates, beneficially owns, or within three years prior to the time of determination of interested stockholder status did own, 15% or more of the outstanding voting stock of the corporation.
Certificate of Incorporation and Bylaws
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides for our board of directors to be divided into three classes with staggered three-year terms. Only one class of directors will be elected at each annual meeting of our stockholders, with the other classes continuing for the remainder of their respective three-year terms. Because our stockholders do not have cumulative voting rights, stockholders holding a
 
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majority of the shares of common stock outstanding will be able to elect all of our directors. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws also provide that directors may be removed by the stockholders only for cause upon the vote of 6623% or more of our outstanding common stock. Furthermore, the authorized number of directors may be changed only by resolution of the board of directors, and vacancies and newly created directorships on the board of directors may, except as otherwise required by law or determined by the board, only be filled by a majority vote of the directors then serving on the board, even though less than a quorum.
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws also provide that all stockholder actions must be effected at a duly called meeting of stockholders and eliminates the right of stockholders to act by written consent without a meeting. Our amended and restated bylaws also provide that only our chairman of the board, chief executive officer or the board of directors pursuant to a resolution adopted by a majority of the total number of authorized directors may call a special meeting of stockholders.
Our amended and restated bylaws also provide that stockholders seeking to present proposals before a meeting of stockholders or to nominate candidates for election as directors at a meeting of stockholders must provide timely advance notice in writing, and specify requirements as to the form and content of a stockholder’s notice.
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws provide that the stockholders cannot amend many of the provisions described above except by a vote of 6623% or more of our outstanding common stock.
The combination of these provisions make it more difficult for our existing stockholders to replace our board of directors as well as for another party to obtain control of us by replacing our board of directors. Since our board of directors has the power to retain and discharge our officers, these provisions also make it more difficult for existing stockholders or another party to effect a change in management. In addition, the authorization of undesignated preferred stock makes it possible for our board of directors to issue preferred stock with voting or other rights or preferences that could impede the success of any attempt to change our control.
These provisions are intended to enhance the likelihood of continued stability in the composition of our board of directors and its policies and to discourage coercive takeover practices and inadequate takeover bids. These provisions are also designed to reduce our vulnerability to hostile takeovers and to discourage certain tactics that may be used in proxy fights. However, such provisions could have the effect of discouraging others from making tender offers for our shares and may have the effect of delaying changes in our control or management. As a consequence, these provisions may also inhibit fluctuations in the market price of our stock that could result from actual or rumored takeover attempts. We believe that the benefits of these provisions, including increased protection of our potential ability to negotiate with the proponent of an unfriendly or unsolicited proposal to acquire or restructure our company, outweigh the disadvantages of discouraging takeover proposals, because negotiation of takeover proposals could result in an improvement of their terms.
Choice of Forum
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware is the exclusive forum for the following types of actions or proceedings under Delaware statutory or common law: (i) any derivative action or proceeding brought on our behalf, (ii) any action asserting a claim for breach of a fiduciary duty owed by any of our directors, officers or other employees to us or our stockholders, (iii) any action asserting a claim arising pursuant to any provision of the DGCL, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation or our amended and restated bylaws or (iv) any action asserting a claim governed by the internal affairs doctrine. However, this exclusive forum provision would not apply to suits brought to enforce a duty or liability created by the Securities Act or the Exchange Act.
In addition, our amended and restated bylaws provide that unless we consent in writing to the selection of an alternative forum, the federal district courts of the United States of America shall, to the fullest extent permitted by law, be the sole and exclusive forum for the resolution of any complaint asserting a cause of
 
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action arising under the Securities Act, and that any person or entity purchasing or otherwise acquiring or holding any interest in shares of our capital stock shall be deemed to have notice of and consented to the federal forum selection provision.
Transfer Agent and Registrar
The transfer agent and registrar for our common stock is Broadridge Corporate Issuer Solutions, Inc. The transfer agent’s address is 1717 Arch Street, Suite 1300, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103. The transfer agent for any series of preferred stock that we may offer under this prospectus will be named and described in the prospectus supplement for that series.
Listing on the Nasdaq Global Select Market
Our common stock is listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “ACRS.”
 
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DESCRIPTION OF DEBT SECURITIES
We may issue debt securities from time to time, in one or more series, as either senior or subordinated debt or as senior or subordinated convertible debt. While the terms we have summarized below will apply generally to any debt securities that we may offer under this prospectus, we will describe the particular terms of any debt securities that we may offer in more detail in the applicable prospectus supplement. The terms of any debt securities offered under a prospectus supplement may differ from the terms described below. Unless the context requires otherwise, whenever we refer to the indenture, we also are referring to any supplemental indentures that specify the terms of a particular series of debt securities.
We will issue the debt securities under the indenture that we will enter into with the trustee named in the indenture. The indenture will be qualified under the Trust Indenture Act of 1939, as amended, or the Trust Indenture Act. We have filed the form of indenture as an exhibit to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, and supplemental indentures and forms of debt securities containing the terms of the debt securities being offered will be filed as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part or will be incorporated by reference from reports that we file with the SEC.
The following summary of material provisions of the debt securities and the indenture is subject to, and qualified in its entirety by reference to, all of the provisions of the indenture applicable to a particular series of debt securities. We urge you to read the applicable prospectus supplements and any related free writing prospectuses related to the debt securities that we may offer under this prospectus, as well as the complete indenture that contains the terms of the debt securities.
General
The indenture does not limit the amount of debt securities that we may issue. It provides that we may issue debt securities up to the principal amount that we may authorize and may be in any currency or currency unit that we may designate. Except for the limitations on consolidation, merger and sale of all or substantially all of our assets contained in the indenture, the terms of the indenture do not contain any covenants or other provisions designed to give holders of any debt securities protection against changes in our operations, financial condition or transactions involving us.
We may issue the debt securities issued under the indenture as “discount securities,” which means they may be sold at a discount below their stated principal amount. These debt securities, as well as other debt securities that are not issued at a discount, may be issued with “original issue discount,” or OID, for U.S. federal income tax purposes because of interest payment and other characteristics or terms of the debt securities. Material U.S. federal income tax considerations applicable to debt securities issued with OID will be described in more detail in any applicable prospectus supplement.
We will describe in the applicable prospectus supplement the terms of the series of debt securities being offered, including:

the title of the series of debt securities;

any limit upon the aggregate principal amount that may be issued;

the maturity date or dates;

the form of the debt securities of the series;

the applicability of any guarantees;

whether or not the debt securities will be secured or unsecured, and the terms of any secured debt;

whether the debt securities rank as senior debt, senior subordinated debt, subordinated debt or any combination thereof, and the terms of any subordination;

if the price (expressed as a percentage of the aggregate principal amount thereof) at which such debt securities will be issued is a price other than the principal amount thereof, the portion of the principal amount thereof payable upon declaration of acceleration of the maturity thereof, or if applicable, the portion of the principal amount of such debt securities that is convertible into another security or the method by which any such portion shall be determined;
 
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the interest rate or rates, which may be fixed or variable, or the method for determining the rate and the date interest will begin to accrue, the dates interest will be payable and the regular record dates for interest payment dates or the method for determining such dates;

our right, if any, to defer payment of interest and the maximum length of any such deferral period;

if applicable, the date or dates after which, or the period or periods during which, and the price or prices at which, we may, at our option, redeem the series of debt securities pursuant to any optional or provisional redemption provisions and the terms of those redemption provisions;

the date or dates, if any, on which, and the price or prices at which we are obligated, pursuant to any mandatory sinking fund or analogous fund provisions or otherwise, to redeem, or at the holder’s option to purchase, the series of debt securities and the currency or currency unit in which the debt securities are payable;

the denominations in which we will issue the series of debt securities, if other than denominations of $1,000 and any integral multiple thereof;

any and all terms, if applicable, relating to any auction or remarketing of the debt securities of that series and any security for our obligations with respect to such debt securities and any other terms which may be advisable in connection with the marketing of debt securities of that series;

whether the debt securities of the series shall be issued in whole or in part in the form of a global security or securities; the terms and conditions, if any, upon which such global security or securities may be exchanged in whole or in part for other individual securities; and the depositary for such global security or securities;

if applicable, the provisions relating to conversion or exchange of any debt securities of the series and the terms and conditions upon which such debt securities will be so convertible or exchangeable, including the conversion or exchange price, as applicable, or how it will be calculated and may be adjusted, any mandatory or optional (at our option or the holders’ option) conversion or exchange features, the applicable conversion or exchange period and the manner of settlement for any conversion or exchange;

if other than the full principal amount thereof, the portion of the principal amount of debt securities of the series which shall be payable upon declaration of acceleration of the maturity thereof;

additions to or changes in the covenants applicable to the particular debt securities being issued, including, among others, the consolidation, merger or sale covenant;

additions to or changes in the events of default with respect to the securities and any change in the right of the trustee or the holders to declare the principal, premium, if any, and interest, if any, with respect to such securities to be due and payable;

additions to or changes in or deletions of the provisions relating to covenant defeasance and legal defeasance;

additions to or changes in the provisions relating to satisfaction and discharge of the indenture;

additions to or changes in the provisions relating to the modification of the indenture both with and without the consent of holders of debt securities issued under the indenture;

the currency of payment of debt securities if other than U.S. dollars and the manner of determining the equivalent amount in U.S. dollars;

whether interest will be payable in cash or additional debt securities at our or the holders’ option and the terms and conditions upon which the election may be made;

the terms and conditions, if any, upon which we will pay amounts in addition to the stated interest, premium, if any, and principal amounts of the debt securities of the series to any holder that is not a “United States person” for federal tax purposes;
 
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any restrictions on transfer, sale or assignment of the debt securities of the series; and

any other specific terms, preferences, rights or limitations of, or restrictions on, the debt securities, any other additions or changes in the provisions of the indenture, and any terms that may be required by us or advisable under applicable laws or regulations.
Conversion or Exchange Rights
We will set forth in the applicable prospectus supplement the terms on which a series of debt securities may be convertible into or exchangeable for our common stock or our other securities. We will include provisions as to settlement upon conversion or exchange and whether conversion or exchange is mandatory, at the option of the holder or at our option. We may include provisions pursuant to which the number of shares of our common stock or our other securities that the holders of the series of debt securities receive would be subject to adjustment.
Consolidation, Merger or Sale
Unless we provide otherwise in the prospectus supplement applicable to a particular series of debt securities, the indenture will not contain any covenant that restricts our ability to merge or consolidate, or sell, convey, transfer or otherwise dispose of our assets as an entirety or substantially as an entirety. However, any successor to or acquirer of such assets (other than a subsidiary of ours) must assume all of our obligations under the indenture or the debt securities, as appropriate.
Events of Default under the Indenture
Unless we provide otherwise in the prospectus supplement applicable to a particular series of debt securities, the following are events of default under the indenture with respect to any series of debt securities that we may issue:

if we fail to pay any installment of interest on any series of debt securities, as and when the same shall become due and payable, and such default continues for a period of 90 days; provided, however, that a valid extension of an interest payment period by us in accordance with the terms of any indenture supplemental thereto shall not constitute a default in the payment of interest for this purpose;

if we fail to pay the principal of, or premium, if any, on any series of debt securities as and when the same shall become due and payable whether at maturity, upon redemption, by declaration or otherwise, or in any payment required by any sinking or analogous fund established with respect to such series; provided, however, that a valid extension of the maturity of such debt securities in accordance with the terms of any indenture supplemental thereto shall not constitute a default in the payment of principal or premium, if any;

if we fail to observe or perform any other covenant or agreement contained in the debt securities or the indenture, other than a covenant specifically relating to another series of debt securities, and our failure continues for 90 days after we receive written notice of such failure, requiring the same to be remedied and stating that such is a notice of default thereunder, from the trustee or holders of at least 25% in aggregate principal amount of the outstanding debt securities of the applicable series; and

if specified events of bankruptcy, insolvency or reorganization occur.
If an event of default with respect to debt securities of any series occurs and is continuing, other than an event of default specified in the last bullet point above, the trustee or the holders of at least 25% in aggregate principal amount of the outstanding debt securities of that series, by notice to us in writing, and to the trustee if notice is given by such holders, may declare the unpaid principal of, premium, if any, and accrued interest, if any, due and payable immediately. If an event of default specified in the last bullet point above occurs with respect to us, the principal amount of and accrued interest, if any, of each issue of debt securities then outstanding shall be due and payable without any notice or other action on the part of the trustee or any holder.
 
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The holders of a majority in principal amount of the outstanding debt securities of an affected series may waive any default or event of default with respect to the series and its consequences, except defaults or events of default regarding payment of principal, premium, if any, or interest, unless we have cured the default or event of default in accordance with the indenture. Any waiver shall cure the default or event of default.
Subject to the terms of the indenture, if an event of default under an indenture shall occur and be continuing, the trustee will be under no obligation to exercise any of its rights or powers under such indenture at the request or direction of any of the holders of the applicable series of debt securities, unless such holders have offered the trustee reasonable indemnity. The holders of a majority in principal amount of the outstanding debt securities of any series will have the right to direct the time, method and place of conducting any proceeding for any remedy available to the trustee, or exercising any trust or power conferred on the trustee, with respect to the debt securities of that series, provided that:

the direction so given by the holder is not in conflict with any law or the applicable indenture; and

subject to its duties under the Trust Indenture Act, the trustee need not take any action that might involve it in personal liability or might be unduly prejudicial to the holders not involved in the proceeding.
A holder of the debt securities of any series will have the right to institute a proceeding under the indenture or to appoint a receiver or trustee, or to seek other remedies only if:

the holder has given written notice to the trustee of a continuing event of default with respect to that series;

the holders of at least 25% in aggregate principal amount of the outstanding debt securities of that series have made written request,

such holders have offered to the trustee indemnity satisfactory to it against the costs, expenses and liabilities to be incurred by the trustee in compliance with the request; and

the trustee does not institute the proceeding, and does not receive from the holders of a majority in aggregate principal amount of the outstanding debt securities of that series other conflicting directions within 90 days after the notice, request and offer.
These limitations do not apply to a suit instituted by a holder of debt securities if we default in the payment of the principal, premium, if any, or interest on, the debt securities.
We will periodically file statements with the trustee regarding our compliance with specified covenants in the indenture.
Modification of Indenture; Waiver
We and the trustee may change an indenture without the consent of any holders with respect to specific matters:

to cure any ambiguity, defect or inconsistency in the indenture or in the debt securities of any series;

to comply with the provisions described above under “Description of Debt Securities — Consolidation, Merger or Sale”;

to provide for uncertificated debt securities in addition to or in place of certificated debt securities;

to add to our covenants, restrictions, conditions or provisions such new covenants, restrictions, conditions or provisions for the benefit of the holders of all or any series of debt securities, to make the occurrence, or the occurrence and the continuance, of a default in any such additional covenants, restrictions, conditions or provisions an event of default or to surrender any right or power conferred upon us in the indenture;

to add to, delete from or revise the conditions, limitations, and restrictions on the authorized amount, terms, or purposes of issue, authentication and delivery of debt securities, as set forth in the indenture;
 
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to make any change that does not adversely affect the interests of any holder of debt securities of any series in any material respect;

to provide for the issuance of and establish the form and terms and conditions of the debt securities of any series as provided above under “Description of Debt Securities — General” to establish the form of any certifications required to be furnished pursuant to the terms of the indenture or any series of debt securities, or to add to the rights of the holders of any series of debt securities;

to evidence and provide for the acceptance of appointment under the indenture by a successor trustee; or

to comply with any requirements of the SEC in connection with the qualification of the indenture under the Trust Indenture Act.
In addition, under the indenture, the rights of holders of a series of debt securities may be changed by us and the trustee with the written consent of the holders of at least a majority in aggregate principal amount of the outstanding debt securities of each series that is affected. However, unless we provide otherwise in the prospectus supplement applicable to a particular series of debt securities, we and the trustee may make the following changes only with the consent of each holder of any outstanding debt securities affected:

extending the fixed maturity of any debt securities of any series;

reducing the principal amount, reducing the rate of or extending the time of payment of interest, or reducing any premium payable upon the redemption of any series of any debt securities; or

reducing the percentage of debt securities, the holders of which are required to consent to any amendment, supplement, modification or waiver.
Discharge
The indenture provides that we can elect to be discharged from our obligations with respect to one or more series of debt securities, except for specified obligations, including obligations to:

provide for payment;

register the transfer or exchange of debt securities of the series;

replace stolen, lost or mutilated debt securities of the series;

pay principal of and premium and interest on any debt securities of the series;

maintain paying agencies;

hold monies for payment in trust;

recover excess money held by the trustee;

compensate and indemnify the trustee; and

appoint any successor trustee.
In order to exercise our rights to be discharged, we must deposit with the trustee money or government obligations sufficient to pay all the principal of, any premium, if any, and interest on, the debt securities of the series on the dates payments are due.
Form, Exchange and Transfer
We will issue the debt securities of each series only in fully registered form without coupons and, unless we provide otherwise in the applicable prospectus supplement, in denominations of $1,000 and any integral multiple thereof. The indenture provides that we may issue debt securities of a series in temporary or permanent global form and as book-entry securities that will be deposited with, or on behalf of, The Depository Trust Company, or DTC, or another depositary named by us and identified in the applicable prospectus supplement with respect to that series. To the extent the debt securities of a series are issued in global form and as book-entry, a description of terms relating to any book-entry securities will be set forth in the applicable prospectus supplement.
 
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At the option of the holder, subject to the terms of the indenture and the limitations applicable to global securities described in the applicable prospectus supplement, the holder of the debt securities of any series can exchange the debt securities for other debt securities of the same series, in any authorized denomination and of like tenor and aggregate principal amount.
Subject to the terms of the indenture and the limitations applicable to global securities set forth in the applicable prospectus supplement, holders of the debt securities may present the debt securities for exchange or for registration of transfer, duly endorsed or with the form of transfer endorsed thereon duly executed if so required by us or the security registrar, at the office of the security registrar or at the office of any transfer agent designated by us for this purpose. Unless otherwise provided in the debt securities that the holder presents for transfer or exchange, we will impose no service charge for any registration of transfer or exchange, but we may require payment of any taxes or other governmental charges.
We will name in the applicable prospectus supplement the security registrar, and any transfer agent in addition to the security registrar, that we initially designate for any debt securities. We may at any time designate additional transfer agents or rescind the designation of any transfer agent or approve a change in the office through which any transfer agent acts, except that we will be required to maintain a transfer agent in each place of payment for the debt securities of each series.
If we elect to redeem the debt securities of any series, we will not be required to:

issue, register the transfer of, or exchange any debt securities of that series during a period beginning at the opening of business 15 days before the day of mailing of a notice of redemption of any debt securities that may be selected for redemption and ending at the close of business on the day of the mailing; or

register the transfer or exchange of any debt securities so selected for redemption, in whole or in part, except the unredeemed portion of any debt securities we are redeeming in part.
Information Concerning the Trustee
The trustee, other than during the occurrence and continuance of an event of default under an indenture, undertakes to perform only those duties as are specifically set forth in the applicable indenture. Upon an event of default under an indenture, the trustee must use the same degree of care as a prudent person would exercise or use in the conduct of his or her own affairs. Subject to this provision, the trustee is under no obligation to exercise any of the powers given it by the indenture at the request of any holder of debt securities unless it is offered reasonable security and indemnity against the costs, expenses and liabilities that it might incur.
Payment and Paying Agents
Unless we otherwise indicate in the applicable prospectus supplement, we will make payment of the interest on any debt securities on any interest payment date to the person in whose name the debt securities, or one or more predecessor securities, are registered at the close of business on the regular record date for the interest.
We will pay principal of and any premium and interest on the debt securities of a particular series at the office of the paying agents designated by us, except that unless we otherwise indicate in the applicable prospectus supplement, we will make interest payments by check that we will mail to the holder or by wire transfer to certain holders. Unless we otherwise indicate in the applicable prospectus supplement, we will designate the corporate trust office of the trustee as our sole paying agent for payments with respect to debt securities of each series. We will name in the applicable prospectus supplement any other paying agents that we initially designate for the debt securities of a particular series. We will maintain a paying agent in each place of payment for the debt securities of a particular series.
 
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All money we pay to a paying agent or the trustee for the payment of the principal of or any premium or interest on any debt securities that remains unclaimed at the end of two years after such principal, premium or interest has become due and payable will be repaid to us, and the holder of the debt security thereafter may look only to us for payment thereof.
Governing Law
The indenture and the debt securities will be governed by and construed in accordance with the internal laws of the State of New York, except to the extent that the Trust Indenture Act is applicable.
 
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DESCRIPTION OF WARRANTS
The following description, together with the additional information we may include in any applicable prospectus supplements and free writing prospectuses, summarizes the material terms and provisions of the warrants that we may offer under this prospectus, which may consist of warrants to purchase common stock, preferred stock or debt securities and may be issued in one or more series. Warrants may be issued independently or together with common stock, preferred stock or debt securities offered by any prospectus supplement, and may be attached to or separate from those securities. While the terms we have summarized below will apply generally to any warrants that we may offer under this prospectus, we will describe the particular terms of any series of warrants that we may offer in more detail in the applicable prospectus supplement and any applicable free writing prospectus. The terms of any warrants offered under a prospectus supplement may differ from the terms described below. However, no prospectus supplement will fundamentally change the terms that are set forth in this prospectus or offer a security that is not registered and described in this prospectus at the time of its effectiveness.
We have filed forms of the warrant agreements as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part. We will file as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from reports that we file with the SEC, the form of warrant agreement, if any, including a form of warrant certificate, that describes the terms of the particular series of warrants we are offering. The following summaries of material provisions of the warrants and the warrant agreements are subject to, and qualified in their entirety by reference to, all the provisions of the warrant agreement and warrant certificate applicable to the particular series of warrants that we may offer under this prospectus. We urge you to read the applicable prospectus supplements related to the particular series of warrants that we may offer under this prospectus, as well as any related free writing prospectuses, and the complete warrant agreements and warrant certificates that contain the terms of the warrants.
General
We will describe in the applicable prospectus supplement the terms relating to a series of warrants being offered, including:

the title of such securities;

the offering price or prices and aggregate number of warrants offered;

the currency or currencies for which the warrants may be purchased;

if applicable, the designation and terms of the securities with which the warrants are issued and the number of warrants issued with each such security or each principal amount of such security;

if applicable, the date on and after which the warrants and the related securities will be separately transferable;

if applicable, the minimum or maximum amount of such warrants which may be exercised at any one time;

in the case of warrants to purchase debt securities, the principal amount of debt securities purchasable upon exercise of one warrant and the price at which, and currency in which, this principal amount of debt securities may be purchased upon such exercise;

in the case of warrants to purchase common stock or preferred stock, the number of shares of common stock or preferred stock, as the case may be, purchasable upon the exercise of one warrant and the price at which, and the currency in which, these shares may be purchased upon such exercise;

the effect of any merger, consolidation, sale or other disposition of our business on the warrant agreements and the warrants;

the terms of any rights to redeem or call the warrants;

the terms of any rights to force the exercise of the warrants;

any provisions for changes to or adjustments in the exercise price or number of securities issuable upon exercise of the warrants;
 
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the dates on which the right to exercise the warrants will commence and expire;

the manner in which the warrant agreements and warrants may be modified;

a discussion of any material or special U.S. federal income tax consequences of holding or exercising the warrants;

the terms of the securities issuable upon exercise of the warrants; and

any other specific terms, preferences, rights or limitations of or restrictions on the warrants.
Before exercising their warrants, holders of warrants will not have any of the rights of holders of the securities purchasable upon such exercise, including:

in the case of warrants to purchase debt securities, the right to receive payments of principal of, or premium, if any, or interest on, the debt securities purchasable upon exercise or to enforce covenants in the applicable indenture; or

in the case of warrants to purchase common stock or preferred stock, the right to receive dividends, if any, or, payments upon our liquidation, dissolution or winding up or to exercise voting rights, if any.
Exercise of Warrants
Each warrant will entitle the holder to purchase the securities that we specify in the applicable prospectus supplement at the exercise price that we describe in the applicable prospectus supplement. Unless we otherwise specify in the applicable prospectus supplement, holders of the warrants may exercise the warrants at any time up to the specified time on the expiration date that we set forth in the applicable prospectus supplement. After the close of business on the expiration date, unexercised warrants will become void.
Unless we otherwise specify in the applicable prospectus supplement, holders of the warrants may exercise the warrants by delivering the warrant certificate representing the warrants to be exercised together with specified information, and paying the required amount to the warrant agent in immediately available funds, as provided in the applicable prospectus supplement. We will set forth on the reverse side of the warrant certificate and in the applicable prospectus supplement the information that the holder of the warrant will be required to deliver to the warrant agent in connection with the exercise of the warrant.
Upon receipt of the required payment and the warrant certificate properly completed and duly executed at the corporate trust office of the warrant agent or any other office indicated in the applicable prospectus supplement, we will issue and deliver the securities purchasable upon such exercise. If fewer than all of the warrants represented by the warrant certificate are exercised, then we will issue a new warrant certificate for the remaining amount of warrants. If we so indicate in the applicable prospectus supplement, holders of the warrants may surrender securities as all or part of the exercise price for warrants.
Governing Law
Unless we provide otherwise in the applicable prospectus supplement, the warrants and warrant agreements, and any claim, controversy or dispute arising under or related to the warrants or warrant agreements, will be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of New York.
Enforceability of Rights by Holders of Warrants
Each warrant agent will act solely as our agent under the applicable warrant agreement and will not assume any obligation or relationship of agency or trust with any holder of any warrant. A single bank or trust company may act as warrant agent for more than one issue of warrants. A warrant agent will have no duty or responsibility in case of any default by us under the applicable warrant agreement or warrant, including any duty or responsibility to initiate any proceedings at law or otherwise, or to make any demand upon us. Any holder of a warrant may, without the consent of the related warrant agent or the holder of any other warrant, enforce by appropriate legal action its right to exercise, and receive the securities purchasable upon exercise of, its warrants.
 
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LEGAL OWNERSHIP OF SECURITIES
We can issue securities in registered form or in the form of one or more global securities. We describe global securities in greater detail below. We refer to those persons who have securities registered in their own names on the books that we or any applicable trustee or depositary maintain for this purpose as the “holders” of those securities. These persons are the legal holders of the securities. We refer to those persons who, indirectly through others, own beneficial interests in securities that are not registered in their own names, as “indirect holders” of those securities. As we discuss below, indirect holders are not legal holders, and investors in securities issued in book-entry form or in street name will be indirect holders.
Book-Entry Holders
We may issue securities in book-entry form only, as we will specify in the applicable prospectus supplement. This means securities may be represented by one or more global securities registered in the name of a financial institution that holds them as depositary on behalf of other financial institutions that participate in the depositary’s book-entry system. These participating institutions, which are referred to as participants, in turn, hold beneficial interests in the securities on behalf of themselves or their customers.
Only the person in whose name a security is registered is recognized as the holder of that security. Global securities will be registered in the name of the depositary or its participants. Consequently, for global securities, we will recognize only the depositary as the holder of the securities, and we will make all payments on the securities to the depositary. The depositary passes along the payments it receives to its participants, which in turn pass the payments along to their customers who are the beneficial owners. The depositary and its participants do so under agreements they have made with one another or with their customers; they are not obligated to do so under the terms of the securities.
As a result, investors in a global security will not own securities directly. Instead, they will own beneficial interests in a global security, through a bank, broker or other financial institution that participates in the depositary’s book-entry system or holds an interest through a participant. As long as the securities are issued in global form, investors will be indirect holders, and not legal holders, of the securities.
Street Name Holders
We may terminate a global security or issue securities that are not issued in global form. In these cases, investors may choose to hold their securities in their own names or in “street name.” Securities held by an investor in street name would be registered in the name of a bank, broker or other financial institution that the investor chooses, and the investor would hold only a beneficial interest in those securities through an account he or she maintains at that institution.
For securities held in street name, we or any applicable trustee or depositary will recognize only the intermediary banks, brokers and other financial institutions in whose names the securities are registered as the holders of those securities, and we or any such trustee or depositary will make all payments on those securities to them. These institutions pass along the payments they receive to their customers who are the beneficial owners, but only because they agree to do so in their customer agreements or because they are legally required to do so. Investors who hold securities in street name will be indirect holders, not holders, of those securities.
Legal Holders
Our obligations, as well as the obligations of any applicable trustee or third party employed by us or a trustee, run only to the legal holders of the securities. We do not have obligations to investors who hold beneficial interests in global securities, in street name or by any other indirect means. This will be the case whether an investor chooses to be an indirect holder of a security or has no choice because we are issuing the securities only in global form.
For example, once we make a payment or give a notice to the holder, we have no further responsibility for the payment or notice even if that holder is required, under agreements with its participants or customers or by law, to pass it along to the indirect holders but does not do so. Similarly, we may want to obtain the approval of the holders to amend an indenture, to relieve us of the consequences of a default or of our
 
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obligation to comply with a particular provision of an indenture, or for other purposes. In such an event, we would seek approval only from the holders, and not the indirect holders, of the securities. Whether and how the legal holders contact the indirect holders is up to the legal holders.
Special Considerations for Indirect Holders
If you hold securities through a bank, broker or other financial institution, either in book-entry form because the securities are represented by one or more global securities or in street name, you should check with your own institution to find out:

how it handles securities payments and notices;

whether it imposes fees or charges;

how it would handle a request for the holders’ consent, if ever required;

whether and how you can instruct it to send you securities registered in your own name so you can be a holder, if that is permitted in the future;

how it would exercise rights under the securities if there were a default or other event triggering the need for holders to act to protect their interests; and

if the securities are in book-entry form, how the depositary’s rules and procedures will affect these matters.
Global Securities
A global security is a security that represents one or any other number of individual securities held by a depositary. Generally, all securities represented by the same global securities will have the same terms.
Each security issued in book-entry form will be represented by a global security that we issue to, deposit with and register in the name of a financial institution or its nominee that we select. The financial institution that we select for this purpose is called the depositary. Unless we specify otherwise in the applicable prospectus supplement, The Depository Trust Company, New York, New York, known as DTC, will be the depositary for all securities issued in book-entry form.
A global security may not be transferred to or registered in the name of anyone other than the depositary, its nominee or a successor depositary, unless special termination situations arise. We describe those situations below under “— Special Situations When a Global Security Will Be Terminated.” As a result of these arrangements, the depositary, or its nominee, will be the sole registered owner and legal holder of all securities represented by a global security, and investors will be permitted to own only beneficial interests in a global security. Beneficial interests must be held by means of an account with a broker, bank or other financial institution that in turn has an account with the depositary or with another institution that does. Thus, an investor whose security is represented by a global security will not be a legal holder of the security, but only an indirect holder of a beneficial interest in the global security.
If the prospectus supplement for a particular security indicates that the security will be issued as a global security, then the security will be represented by a global security at all times unless and until the global security is terminated. If termination occurs, we may issue the securities through another book-entry clearing system or decide that the securities may no longer be held through any book-entry clearing system.
Special Considerations for Global Securities
As an indirect holder, an investor’s rights relating to a global security will be governed by the account rules of the investor’s financial institution and of the depositary, as well as general laws relating to securities transfers. We do not recognize an indirect holder as a holder of securities and instead deal only with the depositary that holds the global security.
 
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If securities are issued only as global securities, an investor should be aware of the following:

an investor cannot cause the securities to be registered in his or her name, and cannot obtain non-global certificates for his or her interest in the securities, except in the special situations we describe below;

an investor will be an indirect holder and must look to his or her own bank or broker for payments on the securities and protection of his or her legal rights relating to the securities, as we describe above;

an investor may not be able to sell interests in the securities to some insurance companies and to other institutions that are required by law to own their securities in non-book-entry form;

an investor may not be able to pledge his or her interest in the global security in circumstances where certificates representing the securities must be delivered to the lender or other beneficiary of the pledge in order for the pledge to be effective;

the depositary’s policies, which may change from time to time, will govern payments, transfers, exchanges and other matters relating to an investor’s interest in the global security;

we and any applicable trustee have no responsibility for any aspect of the depositary’s actions or for its records of ownership interests in the global security, nor will we or any applicable trustee supervise the depositary in any way;

the depositary may, and we understand that DTC will, require that those who purchase and sell interests in the global security within its book-entry system use immediately available funds, and your broker or bank may require you to do so as well; and

financial institutions that participate in the depositary’s book-entry system, and through which an investor holds its interest in the global security, may also have their own policies affecting payments, notices and other matters relating to the securities.
There may be more than one financial intermediary in the chain of ownership for an investor. We do not monitor and are not responsible for the actions of any of those intermediaries.
Special Situations When a Global Security Will Be Terminated
In a few special situations described below, a global security will terminate and interests in it will be exchanged for physical certificates representing those interests. After that exchange, the choice of whether to hold securities directly or in street name will be up to the investor. Investors must consult their own banks or brokers to find out how to have their interests in securities transferred to their own names, so that they will be direct holders. We have described the rights of holders and street name investors above.
A global security will terminate when the following special situations occur:

if the depositary notifies us that it is unwilling, unable or no longer qualified to continue as depositary for that global security and we do not appoint another institution to act as depositary within 90 days;

if we notify any applicable trustee that we wish to terminate that global security; or

if an event of default has occurred with regard to securities represented by that global security and has not been cured or waived.
The applicable prospectus supplement may also list additional situations for terminating a global security that would apply only to the particular series of securities covered by the prospectus supplement. When a global security terminates, the depositary, and neither we nor any applicable trustee, is responsible for deciding the names of the institutions that will be the initial direct holders.
 
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SELLING SECURITYHOLDERS
Information about selling securityholders, where applicable, will be set forth in a prospectus supplement, in a post-effective amendment to this registration statement, or in filings we make with the SEC under the Exchange Act that are incorporated by reference.
 
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PLAN OF DISTRIBUTION
We or selling securityholders may sell the securities from time to time pursuant to underwritten public offerings, “at-the-market” offerings, negotiated transactions, block trades, or a combination of these methods, or through any other methods described in a prospectus supplement. We or selling securityholders may sell the securities to or through one or more underwriters or dealers (acting as principal or agent), through agents, directly to one or more purchasers, or as otherwise described in a prospectus supplement. We or selling securityholders may distribute securities from time to time in one or more transactions:

at a fixed price or prices, which may be changed;

at market prices prevailing at the time of sale;

at prices related to such prevailing market prices; or

at negotiated prices.
A prospectus supplement or supplements (and any related free writing prospectus that we may authorize to be provided to you) will describe the terms of the offering of the securities, including, to the extent applicable:

the name or names of the underwriters, dealers, or agents, if any;

the name or names of the selling securityholders, if any;

the purchase price of the securities or other consideration therefor, and the proceeds, if any, we will receive from the sale;

any options to purchase additional shares or other options under which underwriters may purchase additional securities from us or any selling securityholders;

any agency fees or underwriting discounts and other items constituting agents’ or underwriters’ compensation;

any public offering price;

any discounts or concessions allowed or reallowed or paid to dealers; and

any securities exchange or market on which the securities may be listed.
Only underwriters named in the prospectus supplement will be underwriters of the securities offered by the prospectus supplement. Dealers and agents participating in the distribution of the securities may be deemed to be underwriters, and compensation received by them on resale of the securities may be deemed to be underwriting discounts. If such dealers or agents were deemed to be underwriters, they may be subject to statutory liabilities under the Securities Act.
If underwriters are used in the sale, they will acquire the securities for their own account and may resell the securities from time to time in one or more transactions at a fixed public offering price or at varying prices determined at the time of sale. The obligations of the underwriters to purchase the securities will be subject to the conditions set forth in the applicable underwriting agreement. We or selling securityholders may offer the securities to the public through underwriting syndicates represented by managing underwriters or by underwriters without a syndicate. Subject to certain conditions, the underwriters will be obligated to purchase all of the securities offered by the prospectus supplement, other than securities covered by any option to purchase additional shares or other option. If a dealer is used in the sale of securities, we, a selling stockholder, or an underwriter will sell the securities to the dealer, as principal. The dealer may then resell the securities to the public at varying prices to be determined by the dealer at the time of resale. To the extent required, we will set forth in the prospectus supplement the name of the dealer and the terms of the transaction. Any public offering price and any discounts or concessions allowed or reallowed or paid to dealers may change from time to time.
We or selling securityholders may use underwriters, dealers, or agents with whom we have a material relationship. We will describe in the prospectus supplement, naming the underwriter, dealer, or agent, the nature of any such relationship.
 
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We or selling securityholders may sell securities directly or through agents we designate from time to time. We will name any agent involved in the offering and sale of securities, and we will describe any commissions payable to the agent in the prospectus supplement. Unless the prospectus supplement states otherwise, the agent will act on a best-efforts basis for the period of its appointment.
We may provide agents, underwriters and dealers with indemnification against civil liabilities, including liabilities under the Securities Act, or contribution with respect to payments that the agents, underwriters or dealers may make with respect to these liabilities. Agents, underwriters and dealers, or their affiliates, may engage in transactions with, or perform services for, us in the ordinary course of business.
Selling securityholders may be deemed to be underwriters under the Securities Act in connection with the securities they resell and any profits on the sales may be deemed to be underwriting discounts and commissions under the Securities Act.
All securities we may offer, other than common stock, will be new issues of securities with no established trading market. Any underwriters may make a market in these securities, but will not be obligated to do so and may discontinue any market making at any time without notice. We cannot guarantee the liquidity of the trading markets for any securities.
Any underwriter may be granted an option to purchase additional shares and engage in stabilizing transactions, short-covering transactions and penalty bids in accordance with Regulation M under the Exchange Act. An underwriter’s option to purchase additional shares involves sales in excess of the offering size, which create a short position. Stabilizing transactions permit bids to purchase the underlying security so long as the stabilizing bids do not exceed a specified maximum price. Syndicate-covering or other short-covering transactions involve purchases of the securities, either through exercise of the over-allotment option or in the open market after the distribution is completed, to cover short positions. Penalty bids permit the underwriters to reclaim a selling concession from a dealer when the securities originally sold by the dealer are purchased in a stabilizing or covering transaction to cover short positions. Those activities may cause the price of the securities to be higher than it would otherwise be. If commenced, the underwriters may discontinue any of the activities at any time.
Any underwriters that are qualified market makers on the Nasdaq Global Market may engage in passive market making transactions in the common stock on the Nasdaq Global Market in accordance with Regulation M under the Exchange Act, during the business day prior to the pricing of the offering, before the commencement of offers or sales of the common stock. Passive market makers must comply with applicable volume and price limitations and must be identified as passive market makers. In general, a passive market maker must display its bid at a price not in excess of the highest independent bid for such security; if all independent bids are lowered below the passive market maker’s bid, however, the passive market maker’s bid must then be lowered when certain purchase limits are exceeded. Passive market making may stabilize the market price of the securities at a level above that which might otherwise prevail in the open market and, if commenced, may be discontinued at any time.
LEGAL MATTERS
Unless otherwise indicated in the applicable prospectus supplement, certain legal matters in connection with the offering and the validity of the securities offered by this prospectus, and any supplement thereto, will be passed upon by Cooley LLP.
EXPERTS
The financial statements incorporated in this prospectus by reference to the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020 have been so incorporated in reliance on the report of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, an independent registered public accounting firm, given on the authority of said firm as experts in auditing and accounting.
 
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WHERE YOU CAN FIND MORE INFORMATION
This prospectus is part of a registration statement we filed with the SEC. This prospectus does not contain all of the information set forth in the registration statement and the exhibits to the registration statement. For further information with respect to us and the securities we are offering under this prospectus, we refer you to the registration statement and the exhibits and schedules filed as a part of the registration statement. You should rely only on the information contained in this prospectus or incorporated by reference. We have not authorized anyone else to provide you with different information. We are not making an offer of these securities in any state where the offer is not permitted. You should not assume that the information in this prospectus is accurate as of any date other than the date on the front page of this prospectus, regardless of the time of delivery of this prospectus or any sale of the securities offered by this prospectus.
We file annual, quarterly and current reports, proxy statements and other information with the SEC. The SEC maintains a website that contains reports, proxy statements and other information regarding issuers that file electronically with the SEC, including Aclaris. The address of the SEC website is www.sec.gov.
We maintain a website at www.aclaristx.com. Information contained in or accessible through our website does not constitute a part of this prospectus.
 
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INCORPORATION OF CERTAIN INFORMATION BY REFERENCE
The SEC allows us to “incorporate by reference” information into this prospectus, which means that we can disclose important information to you by referring you to another document filed separately with the SEC. The SEC file number for the documents incorporated by reference in this prospectus is 001-37581. The documents incorporated by reference into this prospectus contain important information that you should read about us.
The following documents are incorporated by reference into this document:



our Current Reports on Form 8-K filed with the SEC on January 19, 2021, January 22, 2021 and May 20, 2021, to the extent the information in such report is filed and not furnished; and

our Proxy Statement filed with the SEC on April 22, 2021, to the extent the information therein is filed and not furnished;

the description of our common stock contained in our Registration Statement on Form 8-A, filed with the SEC on October 2, 2015, including any amendments or reports filed for the purposes of updating this description.
We also incorporate by reference into this prospectus all documents (other than current reports furnished under Item 2.02 or Item 7.01 of Form 8-K and exhibits filed on such form that are related to such items) that are filed by us with the SEC pursuant to Sections 13(a), 13(c), 14 or 15(d) of the Exchange Act after the date of this prospectus but prior to the termination of the offering. These documents include periodic reports, such as Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K, as well as proxy statements.
We will provide to each person, including any beneficial owner, to whom a prospectus is delivered, without charge upon written or oral request, a copy of any or all of the documents that are incorporated by reference into this prospectus but not delivered with the prospectus, including exhibits that are specifically incorporated by reference into such documents. You should direct any requests for documents to:
Aclaris Therapeutics, Inc.
Attn: Kamil Ali-Jackson, Chief Legal Officer
640 Lee Road, Suite 200
Wayne, Pennsylvania 19087
(484) 324-7933
Any statement contained herein or in a document incorporated or deemed to be incorporated by reference into this document will be deemed to be modified or superseded for purposes of the document to the extent that a statement contained in this document or any other subsequently filed document that is deemed to be incorporated by reference into this document modifies or supersedes the statement.
 
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$75,000,000
[MISSING IMAGE: LG_ACLARISTHERAPEUTIC-4C.JPG]
Common Stock
PROSPECTUS SUPPLEMENT
Joint Bookrunners
Jefferies
SVB Leerink
Piper Sandler
                 , 2021

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