JULY 18th, 2005
BrainCells Inc., oriented towards solving central nervous system
diseases, has announced that it has closed a $17.7 million Series A round of funding. Lead investors in the round included
Technology Partners, Oxford Bioscience Partners, and Bay City. The lead investors as well as the other investors on completion
of certain milestones by BrainCells are expected to invest another $9.7 million.
JULY 14th, 2005
Solexa, Inc. (NASDAQ:SLXA) has completed a private placement valued
at $24 million as the second and final closing of a $32.5 million placement. Solexa’s investors, Abingworth Management
Limited, Amadeus Capital Partners Limited, Oxford Bioscience Partners and SV Life Sciences contributed $10.8 million to the
John West, Solexa's CEO indicated that performance results of its
sequencing system would be announced sometime soon, "This financing demonstrates our investors' confidence in our ability
to execute on our business plan to develop and market our next-generation sequencing systems based on Sequencing-by-Synthesis
(SBS) and Cluster molecular arrays. In the coming months, as we move closer to product launch, we expect to be able to announce
additional experimental results demonstrating the performance of our platform in high-end genetic applications."
Solexa’ genetic analysis platform is based on Sequencing-by-Synthesis
and Cluster molecular arrays. The company has focused its product development efforts on integrating sequencing, gene expression,
genotyping and micro-RNA analysis into the system. The company has planned for the SBS-Cluster genetic analysis instrument
system to be ready before the end of 2005.
JULY 14th, 2005
Life Science Angels has closed a total of $1 million in investments
in three early stage companies. The companies include Athenagen, Inc., Pegasus Biologics, Inc. and Uptake Medical Corporation.
Athengen is focused on angiogenesis-related diseases such as cancer, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and rheumatoid
arthritis. Pegasus is a bioimplant company and Uptake Medical is focused on lung therapy, which improves the functioning of
the lung for those with lung diseases.
JULY 15th, 2005
Vitae Pharmaceuticals announced that it has secured $15 million
in equity financing as a result of its licensing and development agreement with GlaxoSmithKline. The company indicated that
the funding was a result of the fact that it had met conditions of the closing, which included Federal Trade Commission clearance
under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act.
Vitae and GlaxoSmithKline entered into their alliance in June of
2005. That agreement was to develop and commercialize drug compounds used for the treatment of hypertension and related cardiovascular
disorders. Intel Corporation, better known for its microprocessors, has collaborated with Vitae in the design of its drugs.
JULY 15th, 2005
NanoViricides, Inc. (Pink Sheets:NNVC), a company that is developing
a technology that selectively destroys viruses, and initially focused on the AIDS virus, has announced that the conditions
of its Series A Convertible Debenture to be offered to select investors.
Eugene Seymour, MD, CEO, on announcement of the terms, indicated
that the financing would enable the company to complete its HIV work, "The financing, when completed, is anticipated to be
sufficient to allow the Company to complete its HIV drug Hivicide 1 preclinical work, and bring it to the point of applying
for an IND with the Food and Drug Administration."
JULY 13th, 2005
HepaLife Technologies, Inc. (OTCBB:HPLF), a company that is giving
its technical attention to the development of products for the treatment of liver diseases, an ailment the company indicates
afflicts about 25 million Americans, has entered into a stock purchase agreement with Fusion Capital Fund II, LLC. As part
of the agreement, Fusion Capital has agreed to purchase up to $15 million of newly issued stock over a period of 30 months.
The agreement, which is subject to stipulations concerning the exact timing, price of the stock and amount of the investment,
is expected to revolve around a program that involves 30 monthly payments of $500,000.00 each.
Mr. Harmel S. Rayat, one of the Directors at HepaLife Technologies
indicated that the one-investor financing had a number of benefits, "Fusion's unique and innovative financing commitment will
allow our Company to raise a significant amount of capital efficiently and on a cost effective basis from a single institutional
investor. With the added capital, our management team can focus on HepaLife's core research activities, expanding and accelerating
the scope of our science and working towards creating the first-of-its-kind artificial liver device and developing proprietary
in-vitro toxicology and pre-clinical drug testing platforms."
HepaLife Technologies also noted that the patented PICM-19 cell
line has potential in the development of the artificial liver device.
JULY 13th, 2005
Emphasizing that the most widely used medical treatments are based
on compounds derived from nature’s greenhouse, PhytoMedical Technologies, Inc. (OTCBB:PYTO), reported that it has entered
into an agreement with Fusion Capital Fund II, LLC to finance the development and commercialization of its plant derived pharmaceutical
and nutraceutical compounds.
Similar to Fusion Capital’s agreement with HepaLife, Fusion
Capital has agreed to purchase $10 million in common stock over a period of 25 months. The agreement, which is subject to
stipulations concerning the exact timing, price of the stock and amount of the investment, is expected to revolve around a
program that involves 25 monthly payments of $400,000.00 each.
Mr. Harmel S. Rayat, a Director of PhytoMedical Technologies and
also, HepaLife, commented on the investment and the PhytoMedical’s medical focus, "Fusion's unique and innovative financing
commitment will allow our Company to raise a significant amount of capital efficiently and on a cost effective basis from
a single institutional investor. Now our management team can focus on PhytoMedical's core research activities, expanding and
accelerating the scope of our science and working towards developing clinically approved products for two of the most devastating
disease states in America - diabetes and cachexia."
PhytoMedical also provided interesting statistics that illustrate
what may be lost as tropical rain forests are turned indiscriminately into barren landscapes. The company reports that an
estimated 300 important drugs still remain to be discovered from the 250,000 species of higher plants. The company says that
only 15 percent of the plants so far have been studied for bioactive compounds. Underscoring the point, PhytoMedical reports
that twenty of the best selling drugs come from natural plant sources.
Currently PhytoMedical is focused on the development of BDC-03,
a plant derived compound that has potential to fight Cachexia through the promotion of a lower fat percentage, lower cholesterol
and increased lean muscle mass. Cachexia, a real concern for those that have cancer or AIDs, can result in a lose up to 30
percent of lean muscle mass – a major factor that effects vital organs and often results in the death of the patient.
Cachexia is said to afflict 25 percent of all AIDs patients and
90 percent of all cancer patients.
The company also is focused on diabetes. An interesting result that
the company noted from a study published in Diabetes Care, from the American Diabetes Association, was that one gram of cinnamon
can lower blood sugar by an average of 18 to 29 percent. Significant reductions in triglycerides and LDL cholesterol were
also noted in the study. These positive effects lasted for at least 20 days after the cinnamon treatment was stopped. PhytoMedical
is currently working on synthesizing the active components in cinnamon.
JULY 12th, 2005
CoreValve, which has developed a delivery system for percutaneous
heart valve replacement, has closed a $24 million Series B round led by Apax Partners and joined in by HealthCap.
Jacques Seguin, MD, PhD, CEO at CoreValve commented on the investment
and emphasized that the new technology offers a potential alternative to those who can not be treated with conventional open-heart
surgery, and as a less traumatic approach to all patients in need of heart valve replacement, "This significant cash
infusion from experienced and successful investors is a dramatic endorsement of CoreValve's ReValving approach to percutaneous
aortic valve replacement--a procedure that no doubt represents the area of legitimate excitement for the future of interventional
cardiology. Not only will ReValving offer immediate hope to patients who are currently left untreated because of their high
surgical-risk profile, but ReValving also will eventually offer all patients the opportunity to avoid the trauma of open-heart
The percutaneous heart valve replacement technology that CoreValve
is working on uses a catheter-and-self-expanding-frame approach like angioplasty and stenting. The company notes that the
approach results is less trauma than open heart surgery and also provides substantial cost savings.
JULY 12th, 2005
Transgene (Eurolist Paris : FR0005175080 - NASDAQ: TRGNY) has raised
34.9 million Euros in an oversubscribed subscription placement of 4,657,500 ABSA priced at 7.50 Euros. The company indicated
that an extension is planned that may result in a further 18.7 million euros.
Transgene develops therapeutic vaccines and immunotherapeutic products
for the treatment of oncology and infectious diseases.
JULY 12th, 2005
Primera Biosystems Closes $11 Million in Series A Placement
– Gene Expression System
Primera Biosystems, Inc, which is developing gene expression analysis systems and assays, has
closed an $11 million placement of Series A Preferred Stock. Investors in the round lists include MPM Capital, Burrill and
Company, and the Malaysian Technology Development Corporation. Primera plans to use the funds for the further development
of instrument systems and disease specific diagnostic reagent kits.
Primera’s "STAR" (Scalable Transcription Analysis Routine)
system is based on real-time PCR and DNA microarray technologies. The gene expression analysis system is characterized by
faster speed, lower costs and high accuracy.
JULY 11th, 2005
Structural GenomiX Enters $15 Million Agreement with CFFT
In an effort to find a cure for cystic fibrosis, Structural GenomiX, Inc. (SGX) and Cystic
Fibrosis Foundation Therapeutics, Inc. (CFFT), affiliated with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, has entered into a three-year
$15 million drug discovery program. As part of the agreement, CFFT will provide over $15 million to SGX. The funding will
come in the form of technology access, funding and payments for specific research related developments. The agreement also
will give SGX eligibility rights for royalty payments on product sales. In exchange, SGX will focus on product development.
Fundamental to SGX’s product development effort goal is the
production of “correctors” of the delta F508 form of the Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Regulator (CFTR) protein.
People with Cystic Fibrosis have genetics characterized by the delta F508 mutation. According to Robert J. Beall, Ph.D., President
and CEO of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and CFFT, "Our work with SGX over the past four years has produced significant advances
in understanding the cellular defects that cause this difficult disease. SGX was the first to solve the structure of the mutant
domain of the CFTR protein, which is present in 90 percent of people with cystic fibrosis."
According to the report, over 30,000 people in the United States
alone are estimated to have cystic fibrosis. Furthermore there are over 10 million Americans who carry one copy of the defective
gene. Those that inherit the disease, as a result of two parents who have a defective gene, in general will have lung disorders
that often result in serious infections. Correctors offer hope in correcting this problem by enabling chloride transport across
the lung epithelium.
JULY 11th, 2005
Furthering its position in the general market for cancer therapeutics
with a Series C Private Placement is Panacea Pharmaceuticals, Inc. The company has been working on product development related
to the enzyme human aspartyl (asparaginyl) Beta-hydroxylase (HAAH). The company reports that HAAH over-expression has been
observed in the tissue of over twenty tumor types that have been tested so far. These include pancreas, breast, ovary, liver,
colon, prostate, lung, brain, and bile duct tumors. The company also says that “HAAH over-expression has been detected
in 99% of tumor specimens (greater than 1000) tested to date and has not been detected in normal or adjacent non-affected
The company in collaboration with MIT has indicated success with
product developments formulated with HAAH in mind. According to Hossein A. Ghanbari, PhD, CEO and Chief Scientific Officer
of Panacea, "We're excited by the continued strength of our findings in the HAAH cancer program. These include the recent
milestone we achieved under our antibody development collaboration with MIT, as well as positive efficacy studies in animal
models of human primary liver cancer and metastatic human colon cancer."
Investors in the Series C Private Placement, which raised about
$7 million, were listed as Mitsubishi Corporation Life Sciences Venture, Olympus, JSR, Shin-Etsu Chemical, Fuji Photo Film,
Dai Nippon Printing, and Tokio Marine and Nichido Fire Insurance.
JULY 8th, 2005
As the lead partner of a regional consortium, the University of
Washington was awarded a $15.4 million grant to develop an advanced, portable medical diagnostic system that can be used to
quickly diagnose diseases anywhere a health worker can walk to. From the list of companies involved in the project, which
includes Nanogen, the silicon microarray company, Micronics, the lab-on-a-card company, and PATH, a non-profit health strategy
company, the road points to a device that combines the latest miniaturized microfluidic analysis and sampling technology with
the latest genetic clinical analysis technology.
Commenting on the group was Paul Yager, lead investigator on
the project and Vice Chair and Professor at the University of Washington’s Department of Bioengineering, "This is a
formidable group. Each partner brings vital skills and experience to the mix. I believe this combination is what led to our
being selected from such a wide range of applicants and it's what will make our efforts successful.”
The award is one of 43 research projects that have been funded through
the $436 million Grand Challenges in Global Health initiative. The initiative is specifically focused to improve health care
and provide treatment for the diseases of the poor, the majority of diseases. That market is considered under served because
of market dynamics and differences in cost of living in different geographic areas.
The target size for the final working system is expected to fit
in a pocket, or about the size of a handheld computer.
JULY 8th, 2005
Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ANDS), an anti-infective medicines
company, reports that as a result of the expiration of the waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Antitrust Improvements
Act, the company will receive an initial payment of $20 million from Novartis. The original agreement with Novartis was for
the development and commercialization of ANA975 for chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) and hepatitis B virus (HBV). The company
also indicated that in addition to the $20 million payment, it is now eligible for $550 million in regulatory and commercial
milestone payments. These payments are contingent on the development and commercialization of ANA975.
JULY 8th, 2005
Sirna Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:RNAI), a company that has taken
a RNAi approach to solve medical problems, reports that it has completed the initial closing of a $28.01 private placement
of its common stock and warrants. Venture capitalists included Sprout Group, Oxford Bioscience Partners, and Venrock Associates.
The funds are planned to further the development of Sirna-027 in AMD (age-related macular degeneration). The funding is
also expected to go towards two preclinical programs involving Hepatitis C and Dermatology.
JULY 7th, 2005
In the United Kingdom, the International Development Secretary Hilary
Benn announced that £60 million would be available to eradicate polio. The funding is expected to be used to vaccinate 500
million children to ensure that polio can not resurface. 20 million is expected to be available by the end of 2005 with the
remaining 40 million pounds available in the 2006 to 2008 time frame. The report indicated that polio still afflicts 12 nations.
These were listed as Yemen, Nigeria, Indonesia, Sudan, India, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Niger, Mali, Cameroon and Angola.
The report also indicated that in 2004 over 90 percent of the 1,255 cases were found in Africa.
JULY 6th, 2005
First is was wireless, now San Diego, according to the San Diego
Union Tribune, is set to receive approximately $100 million from The National Institutes of Health. According to the newspaper,
the goal of the grants is to develop a better understanding of genes to further develop drugs and treatments. The grants are
part of a $300 million nationwide program called the Protein Structure Initiative to determine the three dimensional shape
The Tribune also reports that two companies will administer the
funds. These include, Structural Genomix (SGX), responsible for $48.5 million and The Scripps Research Institute, responsible
for $52.7 million.
Stuctural Genomix reported that it will allocate half of the funding,
which it says came from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences and is called a National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Cooperative Agreement Award, to institutions and use the other half for its own research. Institutions that are
expected to receive funding as part of the grant are the University of California ay San Diego, the Burnham Institute and
the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation – according to the Tribune.
According to Dr. Stephen K. Burley, SGX's chief scientific officer
"We are pleased that SGX's comprehensive protein structure research efforts to date laid the groundwork for this NIH award.
Understanding of protein structures plays an integral role in comprehending complex biological systems and in developing the
next generation of drug targets and medicines. This award gives SGX an unprecedented opportunity to favorably impact both
basic biomedical research and the drug discovery process."
JULY 6th, 2005
Novavax, Inc. (NASDAQ:NVAX), noted for its micellar technology,
a topically applied drug delivery system based on oil and water nanoemulsions, has completed $4 million in financing as a
result of a stock offer of 4,000,000 shares priced at $1.00 a share.
Novavax currently offers prescription pharmaceutical products and
prenatal vitamins. One of its products based on micellar nanoparticles is ESTRASORB. That topical emulsion lotion is
used to deliver estrogen to help manage vasomotor symptoms in postmenopausal women. Another planned micellar based product,
Androsorb, a topical testosterone treatment, has completed Phase I trials.
JULY 5th, 2005
Cevena Bioproducts, Inc. has secured $6.0 Million in funding to
commercialize its ViscoFiber product, a beta-glucan concentrate, derived from oats and barley through a patented fractionation
process. The new product is used to improve the health of the heart and offers satiety benefits.
ViscoFiber is presently in clinical trials to evaluate its effect
on cholesterol levels, glycemic response for heart health and efficacy for gastrointestinal health.
The lead investor for the funding was The Business Development Bank
of Canada's Venture Capital Group. Others investors that participated included Golden Opportunities Fund, Foragen Technologies,
Inc and AVAC, Ltd.
JULY 5th, 2005
Neurome Selected for Grant to Develop Needle-less Vaccines
Neurome, Inc. has reported that it has been selected for a grant from the Foundation for the National Institutes
of Health through the Grand Challenges in Global Health Initiative. The grant would be for the development of a needle-free
vaccine delivery system to be developed over the course of the next three years. The new system aimed for is also expected
to be simple, not require complex equipment and be able to be administered without the need for specialized training. In order
to address the challenge, the plan is to develop the vaccines for specific receptors in airway or intestinal epithelium (external
lining) to protect against infectious organisms.
According to Warren Young, Ph.D., President and Chief Operating
Officer of Neurome, "This project continues the process from our successful application of Neurome's TOGA gene discovery tools
toward the development of technologies and therapeutic products that promise to have a significant impact on global health."
JULY 1st, 2005
Immunicon Corporation. (NASDAQ:IMMC) has completed the sale of 4,137,902
shares of common stock generating gross proceeds of $19.7 million. Immunicon is focused on the development and commercialization
of cell- and molecular-based human diagnostic and life science research products. Within that realm the company has concentrated
its efforts on cancer disease management. Specifically its platforms are used for the selection and analysis of rare cells
that circulate in the blood stream, such as tumor cells and endothelial cells.
JUNE 30th, 2005
Topping off a $5.7 million Series A round in 2004, Exagen Diagnostics,
Inc. has completed a $7 million Series B round of financing. Participants in the new round included Tullis-Dickerson &
Co., the round leader, as well as vSpring Capital and Wasatch Venture Fund.
Waneta Tuttle, Ph.D., Exagen’s President, outlined the budget
for the funds, "This round of funding gives Exagen the resources to accelerate our go-to-market plans and advance our pipeline.
We plan to be the first provider of genomic marker IVD kits for breast cancer that enable widespread use in any CLIA-certified
laboratory. Our first tests are the Key2 Breast Cancer Prognosis panel of products that detect changes in DNA copy number
in both hormone receptor-positive and hormone receptor-negative tumors."
Exagen’s IVD kits are used to predict the risk of the advancement
of a disease and a patient's individual response to a specific drug planned for treatment. The company in addition to its
breast cancer tests, plans tests for hepatitis C in order to determine if a patient will respond to treatments with interferon
JUNE 30th, 2005
Torax Medical Completes $10 Million Series B Financing
Torax Medical Inc. has completed a $10 million Series B round of financing. The round was led by Thomas, McNerney
& Partners. Other investors included , Mayo Medical Ventures and Sanderling Ventures. The company intends to use the proceeds
for pre-clinical testing of an implant for the treatment of gastroesophageal reflux disease (also referred to as GERD or acid
reflux). According to the company, chronic acid reflux affects about 20 million people in the United States.
Berg, Torax Medical's CEO indicated that the technology under development would overcome limitations of present day treatments
of the problem, "We believe our proprietary technology has the potential to correct the underlying defect of GERD and help
millions of the people who suffer from this disease. Our objective is to provide a measurable cure for this high health-risk
condition in a way that is minimally invasive to the patient."
JUNE 28th, 2005
In an effort led by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the
Grand Challenges in Health Initiative has offered 43 grants with a total value of $436.6 million. The grants are for
the development of medical technology to serve the needs of the world’s poorest countries. With the announcement
the initiative listed a wide range of projects that are to be the focus of the research.
The initiative is supported by an existing $450 million commitment
from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, a $27.1 million commitment from the Wellcome Trust, and $4.5 million from the
Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).
The Gates Foundation is credited with the establishment of the Grand
Challenges in 2003, in partnership with the National Institutes of Health. Bill Gates, co-founder of the Bill & Melinda
Gates Foundation with the announcement noted how little research was directed towards the diseases of the poor, "It's shocking
how little research is directed toward the diseases of the world's poorest countries. By harnessing the world's capacity for
scientific innovation, I believe we can transform health in the developing world and save millions of lives."
JUNE 28th, 2005
IsoRay Medical, Inc. with the close of its latest round reported
that it has raised over $10 million in the last 18 months. The company offers a proprietary medical isotope, Cesium-131, for
the treatment of prostrate cancer. The isotope is considered a low-level radioactive treatment alternative. According to Roger
Girard, CEO of IsoRay, "We believe Cesium-131 to be a very effective option for men choosing brachytherapy to treat their
prostate cancer. We expect it to kill the cancerous cells more rapidly, with a shorter duration and with less side-effects.
This will allow patients to return to a normal lifestyle within a very short time period."
The company plans another funding round in October of 2005. The
company notes that over 230,000 men will be diagnosed with prostrate cancer in the United States this year.
JUNE 27th, 2005
Orqis Medical Corporation, which has developed the Cancion CRS cardiac
recovery system, has announced the close of its Series D round. The round, which brought in $22.7 million, is expected to
be used for further evaluation of the company’s heart therapies. According to Marvin Konstam, M.D., Medical Director
at Orqis Medical, "This financing will allow Orqis Medical to complete scientific and clinical validation of its novel hemodynamic
discovery that continuous blood flow augmentation to the descending aorta treats underlying mechanisms responsible for heart
failure. This discovery could be a significant advance in the treatment of patients who suffer from heart failure."
The Cancion CRS cardiac recovery system is used to treat, according
to the company, “the underlying disease progression of congestive heart failure.” The company’s technology
is also focused on the treatment of cardiac patients that have been considered untreatable with present modern day medicine.
Investors in the round included Boston Scientific Corporation, Lighthouse
Capital Partners and previous investors.
JUNE 27th, 2005
Diseases without markets, a problem that keeps much of the world
sick, has been given more attention through a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The four-year grant, for
$5.4 million, was announced by BIO Ventures for Global Health (BVGH) at BIO 2005. The company estimated that 90 percent of
global disease receives less than 10 percent of health research funding.
Richard Klausner, MD, Executive Director of the Gates Foundation's
Global Health program alluded to the biotech’s industry’s capability to easily eradicate most of the world’s
diseases, "The biotech industry has tremendous potential for developing new therapeutics, vaccines and diagnostics against
diseases of the developing world. For too long, funding, market, and information barriers have prevented biotech companies
from realizing this potential. We believe that BIO Ventures for Global Health will provide the means to help industry overcome
some of these barriers. We congratulate BVGH in taking leadership in helping to bring the potential of biotechnology to improving
health equity in our world."
JUNE 27th, 2005
Cardiva Medical, Inc. has closed an $8.3 million round of financing.
The Series B round was led by Stockton Partners, Inc and included investments from Sycamore Ventures, Harbinger VC Corp.,
and W.I. Harper Group.
Cardiva offers the Boomerang ClosureWire device, which has been
cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to assist in the closing of femoral artery puncture sites. That technology,
a vascular closure technology, according to Ken Goldman, M.D., Managing Director of Stockton Partners, may provide the underpinnings
for the capture of the vascular closure market, "We think that Cardiva and its Boomerang technology have the ability to become
the market leader in vascular closure. This financing will allow Cardiva to continue its rapid sales growth in the U.S. and
accelerate the introduction of its new products to the marketplace."
According to Cardiva, the worldwide vascular closure market is in
the neighborhood of $1 billion to $1.5 billion.
JUNE 22nd, 2005
Grant Life Sciences Looks to $2 Million in Secured Convertible Notes for Cervical
Cancer Test Technology
Grant Life Sciences (OTC Bulletin Board: GLIF) expects to complete $2 million in financing
in connection with 10 percent Callable Secured Convertible Notes. The company plans to use the funding to increase its revenue
stream from its AccuDx product line. According to Stan Yakatan, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "In addition to providing
us with working capital, this financing allows us to begin executing our plans to generate revenues from our AccuDx product
line, and it allows us to substantially advance development of our cervical cancer blood test."
JUNE 22nd, 2005
TriMed Series A Funding for Protein Development for Intestinal
Infections Treatment – Non-Antibiotic Based
TriMed Research, Inc. has secured 5 million Euros in a Series A funding round. The funding
is expected to go towards clinical studies for the company’s MAA technology. MAA is an anti-infective compound used
for the treatment of gastrointestinal diseases. Because the technology is not an anti-biotic, bacteria cannot develop a resistance
to it. According to Dr. David Winter, CEO at TriMed Research. "MAA represents an opportunity for the development and introduction
of a new class of anti-infective compounds. Unlike antibiotics, MAA does not have the potential of resistance development
and does not fall under the constraints of veterinary use of antibiotic therapy."
JUNE 21st, 2005
Prolacta Bioscience, a company focused on milk bank operations
for infants and premature babies, raised $4 million in a Series B round. The funds are planned for the construction of a pharmaceutical
processing facility, and further operations in the milk bank area, which includes further product development efforts.
Elena Medo, CEO of Prolacta Bioscience, took the funding announcement
as an opportunity to explain why breastmilk can be very important in the treatment of newborn infants, "Breastmilk contains
inherent immunological, therapeutic and nutritional properties that need to be available for patients, particularly premature
babies. These funds will enable the company to focus on processing human donor milk to ensure it is as safe as possible. The
success of this financing round is evidence of Prolacta's long-term commitment to the safety and availability of human milk."
JUNE 20th, 2005
Arrowhead Research Corporation (NASDAQ:ARWR), with the passing of
its warrant exercise deadline, reported net proceeds of over $20 million in cash from the redeemable warrants. Commenting
on the funding was R. Bruce Stewart, President of Arrowhead, "We continually see exciting opportunities in nanotechnology.
Having a strong cash position will allow us to act quickly when the right opportunities are identified. The proceeds from
the warrant call will allow Arrowhead to continue to fund existing companies, to expand our research programs, and to continue
implementing our overall business plan."
Arrowhead Research acquires and commercializes technology in the materials,
electronics, life sciences, and energy fields.
JUNE 20th, 2005
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) and Vicuron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:MICU)(NASDAQ:Nuovo
Mercato) announced a definitive agreement whereby the two will merge operations. The purchase price of Vicuron has been initially
estimated at $1.9 billion. Vicuron has two products under review at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). These products
are used for the treatment of fungal infections and for Gram-positive infections.
JUNE 20th, 2005
RegeneRx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (AMEX:RGN) has filed a shelf registration
statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to sell up to $60 million of common stock and warrants. Once declared
effective, RegeneRX will be able to sell the securities.
RegeneRX focuses its attention on the impaired wound healing market.
These include wounds that are internal and external and result from prolonged immobility, disease and age. With the announcement
RegeneRX noted that impaired wound healing costs an estimated $5 to $7 billion per year and is expected to rise at a rate
of 10 percent a year. The company also stated that 1.5 million in the United States have impaired healing problems.
Along with those statistic the company reported that heart attacks
result in a million deaths annually in the United States and 13 million plus Americans suffer from coronary artery disease.
The company indicates that heart attacks contribute to $250 billion in medical bills every year. Strokes also result in a
high medical bills, $54 billion.
JUNE 17th, 2005
Exelixis, Inc. (NASDAQ:EXEL) in an agreement with Symphony Capital
Partners, L.P. have formed Symphony Evolution Inc. The new company is to further develop XL647, XL999 and XL784. The formation
of the company involved an $80 million funding transaction. As part of the transaction, Symphony Evolution will be initially
capitalized at $40 million and has an option for an additional $20 million to $40 million investment. As part of the agreement,
Exelixis licensed intellectual property for the XL647, XL999 and XL784 compounds to Symphony Evolution.
The XL line of compounds are used in the treatment of a wide variety
of diseases includingcancer. Specificallly, the XL647, XL999 and XL880 are anti-cancer compounds currently in Phase I clinical
Exelixis is a genomics based drug discovery company.
JUNE 15th, 2005
Verus $98 Million Funding Level Believed to be Record
Breaker in San Diego
Verus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a company focused on the medical issues of children, reported
it has completed its initial $98 million in financing. That financing included $78 million in Series A funding and $20 million
in "product-specific royalty financing." The Series A financing was led by Domain Associates and Prospect Venture Partners.
Others that participated included Paul Royalty Fund, MPM Capital, Montreux Equity Partners, Athenian Venture Partners, Windamere
Venture Partners, and undisclosed private investors. Paul Royalty Fund provided the royalty financing commitment.
Olav B. Bergheim of Domain Associates discussed the focus of the
company, "We are very excited about Verus' pediatric-oriented strategy and their initial focus on the treatment of asthma,
allergies, and related diseases and conditions. With this financing in place, the company is well-positioned to become the
partner of choice for those companies interested in optimizing the development and commercialization of novel, pediatric-oriented
Verus Pharmaceuticals' present strategy is to build a product portfolio
through acquisitions and alliances.
JUNE 15th, 2005
Colagen Based Implant Technology Awarded $10 Million in Series B
Pegasus Biologics, Inc. has raised $10 million in a Series B funding venture led by Three Arch
Partners and Frazier HealthCare Ventures. Life Science Angel Investors also participated in the round. The company is developing
France Dixon Helfer, Founder of the company described the applications
of the technology and the use of the funds, "Our innovative collagen-based technologies have enabled us to develop uniquely
intelligent bioimplants that will advance the field of soft tissue repair and replacement in orthopedic, spine and neurosurgery.
The proceeds of the financing will be used to launch our premier product, the Pegasus Biologics OrthADAPT Bioimplant, which
promises to raise the bar in orthopedic soft tissue repair. Furthermore, it will enable us to complete our human studies on
the DurADAPT Bioimplant for repair of the dura mater during craniotomy and spine operations, and for final development of
a biologic solution for replacement of the anterior cruciate ligament."
JUNE 13th, 2005
Gates Foundation Grants $21.8 Million to Sabin Vaccine Institute
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have donated $21.8 million to the Albert B. Sabin Vaccine
Institute, a vaccine development organization. The Sabin Vaccine Institute (SVI) plans to use the grant for its Human Hookworm
Vaccine Initiative (HHVI). Phase I safety trials. The vaccine is expected to manufactured in Brazil, where the disease is
According to the organization, over 740 million individuals worldwide
are host to the dangerous parasite. Because the hookworm extracts large quantities of blood, it is a severe problem with pregnant
woman and children. According to H.R. Shepherd, SVI Chairman, "The Gates Foundation again has demonstrated its commitment
to achieving equity in global health, particularly among 'the poorest of the poor,' by awarding nearly US$40 million to HHVI
since 2000. Without this support, we simply could not develop a human hookworm vaccine."
JUNE 13th, 2005
ZIOPHARM Completes $18 Million Preferred Stock Offering
ZIOPHARM, Inc., a developer of small molecule therapeutics, has completed a Series A Convertible
Preferred Stock offering. The lead investor was Paramount BioCapital, Inc. Gross proceeds were estimated at $18.1 million.
Net proceeds are expected to be used for on-going research and development, manufacturing and clinical trials related to ZIO-101
(organic arsenic) and ZIO-201 (isophosphoramide mustard-lysine) used in the treatment of hematological malignancies, solid
tumors and sarcoma (ZIO-201).
A central strategy of ZIOPHARM's business model is to acquire, develop
and commercialize technology through in-licensing of cancer related technology. Reflecting that strategy were comments from
Jonathan Lewis, MD, PhD, Chief Executive Officer at ZIOPHAR, "We are now better positioned to negotiate a third licensed clinical
product. ZIOPHARM is a semi-virtual specialty cancer company with industry-hardened veterans who can effectively deliver on
in-licensing products, out-sourcing of preclinical and clinical development, and eventual commercialization of niche products.
We expect that when brought to market, these products would have cost-effective manufacturing, pricing and reimbursement with
the potential for several hundred million dollars in sales through our own specialty force, marketing in major markets."
JUNE 10th, 2005
Critical Therapeutics Sets up Private Placement Agreements
- Expects $54.5 Million in June
Critical Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CRTX) in an arrangement that involves institutional investors,
accredited investors, existing stockholders and affiliated entities, has entered into a definitive agreements whereby the
company will place approximately 9.9 million shares of its common stock at $5.48 per share. With the added help of warrants,
the company expects to raise about $54.5 from the transaction, which is scheduled to close on or about June 20, 2005.
With the net proceeds, the company plans to launch its investigational
asthma drug ZYFLO Filmtab (zileuton tablets) The launch of the product is contingent on the company obtaining pending regulatory
approval of a supplemental New Drug Application. Other plans include the further development of the company’s other
products and the expansion of its drug discovery efforts.
JUNE 9th, 2005
Somaxon Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a pharmaceutical company that offers
insomnia and other neuro-psychiatric products, has secured $65 million through the private placement of its Series C preferred
stock. Leader of the round was MPM Capital Partners. Other investors included Prospect Ventures, Domain Associates, LLC, BA
Venture Partners, Montreux Equity Partners and CDIB BioScience Ventures.
Kenneth Cohen, CEO of Somaxon indicated that the funds would help
the company complete clinical trials of its lead product, further clinical development of product used to treat pathological
gambling, and to initiate a study on nicotine dependency, "This investment will help Somaxon achieve its next clinical milestone
with our lead product, SILENOR(TM) (doxepin HCl) 1mg, 3mg and 6mg, which has completed Phase II clinical trials. The investment
also allows us to further the clinical development of oral nalmefene for the treatment of impulse control disorders including
pathological gambling as well as initiate a Phase II study in nicotine dependency. We are also proceeding with product formulation
work on acamprosate which we are targeting for the treatment of certain movement disorders."
JUNE 9th, 2005
Curon Medical, Inc. (NASDAQ:CURN) has reported it raised $8.8 million
by issuing over 13 million shares of common stock at a price of $0.65 a share.
The company indicated that it would use the funding to further develop
its radio frequency (RF) energy technology for the treatment of acid reflux with its Stretta System and bowel incontinence
with the Secca System. Both systems already have received U.S. Food and Drug Administration clearance for the treatment of
the respective problems.
JUNE 7th, 2005
As new technology emerges from the semiconductor and nanotechnology
worlds, minimally invasive is expected to be a phrase one sees more often in the medical world. Electromagnetics, low -cost
advanced imaging technologies, nanodrugs, and miniature micromachined devices all have the potential to make non-invasive
medicine a reality.
Venture capitalists also have an interest in minimally invasive
companies. superDimension Ltd. for instance recently completed a Series B round valued at $27 million. The investment was
led by OrbiMed Advisors LLC, CIBC World Markets and the Strategic Investments Group of Pfizer, Inc. Other existing investors
included Mi3. Other investors superDimension listed were Oxford Bioscience Partners, Pitango Venture Capital, Medica Venture
Partners and Mi3.
Jonathan Silverstein, General Partner at OrbiMed gave his analysis
of superDimension's minimally invasive product, "In our estimation, superDimension is the best medical device platform in
the emerging field of interventional pulmonology. The superDimension system provides a quantum leap forward in a pulmonologist's
ability to successfully biopsy distal tissue in the lungs. In the future, we believe the Bronchus platform will enable doctors
to not only diagnose, but treat patients with pulmonary disease. By providing a new 'railroad' to distal regions of the lung,
superDimension will enable new treatment methodologies that should be more effective and less invasive. We look forward to
working with superDimension's management and board to make this company a commercial success." Concurrent with the closing
of the financing, Mr. Silverstein will join the board of directors of superDimension.
superDimension's states that its platform is based on electromagnetic
localization, image processing, image-to-body registration and steerable endoscopic tools.
JUNE 7th, 2005
Nutraceutical and Micronutrient Company Financed with
BioDelivery Sciences International, Inc. (NASDAQ:BDSI) (NASDAQ:BDSIW) has closed another $2.5
million in the form of secured convertible debt financing from Laurus Master Fund, Ltd. That funding is in addition to $2.5
million it received in February of 2005. The funding is planned for use to further R&D and commercialization opportunities.
BioDelivery holds drug delivery technology for the administration of nutraceuticals and micronutrients.
JUNE 6th, 2005
Catalyst Venture Partners Increases Fast Track Technology
Through an agreement with Quester, another venture capital company located in the United Kingdom,
Catalyst Venture Partners, has increased its funds available to technology companies through its Accelerator Programme. Of
interest to Catalyst was Quester's three University Seed and Investment Funds For Quester, Catalysts Accelerator Programme
was a main point of interest. According to Jamie Brooke, a Director at Quester, "Joining Catalyst's Technology Funding Partnership
makes perfect sense for Quester as we are extremely impressed with the role Catalyst plays in getting companies ready for
funding. Its Accelerator Programme is rapidly gaining an enviable reputation as a basis for preparing companies for investment
and fast growth. The Programme is also a natural complement for our strategy of investing in early-stage technology companies.
We have investment funds available and participating in Catalyst's Technology Funding Partnership will ensure that we have
an early insight to some very high quality investment opportunities."
In addition to investing in emerging companies, Quester through
the Isis College Fund, Sulis Seedcorn Fund and Lachesis Fund, manages seed funds for nine universities. Its focus has been
on emerging information and communication technology (ICT) and healthcare/life sciences. Catalyst is also focused on
the technology sectors with a fund that has reached over £400 million. According to Richard Turner, a partner at Catalyst
Venture Partners, "The aim of our Technology Funding Partnership is to create a fast-track to investment for technology innovators."
JUNE 6th, 2005
Advanced Magnetics NanoVitamin Technology Closes $3.3
Through the closing of a second registered direct sale of common stock and warrant units to
affiliates of Vivo Ventures, LLC, Advanced Magnetics, Inc. (AMEX:AVM) reported that it expects to obtain net proceeds from
the offering and the registered direct sale of common stock and warrants announced on June 1, 2005, of approximately $16.7
Advanced Magnetics develops therapeutic iron compounds for the treatment
of anemia, and imaging agents used in the diagnosis of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Specifically, the company has been
focused on the development and commercialization of products based on its superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticle based
JUNE 2, 2005
Hollis-Eden to Raise $10 Million - World Leader in Immune
Hollis-Eden Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: HEPH) has entered into a subscription agreement
to raise $10.0 million through the sale of common stock and warrants. Although just one institutional investor was sited,
the name of the investor was not disclosed.
Hollis-Eden focuses its attention on investigational drugs called
immune regulating hormones (IRHs). The drug therapy, through the control of gene expression, controls the production of critical
cytokines and enzymes.
JUNE 2nd, 2005
Protalex Raises $5.1 Million - Rheumatoid Arthritis, Pemphigus
Protalex, Inc. (OTC:PRTX) (BULLETIN BOARD: PRTX) has raised, through a private placement of
common stock and warrants, approximately $5.1 million . The company has been developing a new class of drugs for the treatment
of Rheumatoid Arthritis, Pemphigus and other autoimmune diseases.
Steven H. Kane, President and CEO of Protalex, gave an indication
of how the funds would be spent, "The Company will use the proceeds of the private placement primarily to finance the upcoming
Phase I clinical trials for its lead compound, PRTX-100, in Rheumatoid Arthritis and Pemphigus and general working capital
JUNE 1st, 2005
HealthRenu Medical Inc. (OTCBB:HRUM), a skin and wound care company,
has received a $10 million commitment in the form of a 24 month, Standby Equity Distribution Agreement from Cornell Capital
JUNE 1st, 2005
Chronix Biomedial Brings in $1.6 Million for Disease Monitoring
Chronix Biomedical, a company that develops disease analysis tests for the human and livestock
markets, has closed $1.1 million. The funding, in the form of a convertible note, came from the Keiretsu Forum.
John Dilts, President of the Los Angeles and Westlake Village Chapters
of Keiretsu Forum, noted that Chronix' technology would be helpful in the testing and treatment of two diseases, "We are very
excited about the important work pioneered by Chronix Biomedical. This is a company that can make a real difference in the
testing and treatment of Myeloma as well as Mad Cow Disease. We are hopeful that our member investors will see a tremendous
return on their investment and we are proud to support this very worthy cause."
Dr. Brian Durie, IMF Chairman of the Board and Director of Myeloma
Programs, Aptium Oncology noted the prospects for the Myeloma "Ultimately we see this as a simple way to evaluate and treat
Myeloma at a molecular level. This is one way to bring treatment for Myeloma into the 21st Century."
One of the Mad Cow disease products is used to determine if a cow
is susceptible to coming down with Mad Cow disease. Chronix points out that Mad Cow disease, like scrapies, appears to be
transmitted to different species by the consumption of infected animals. One theory is that Mad Cow disease evolved as an
off-shoot of scrapies - as a direct result of feeding parts of infected sheep to cows. As the disease evolves in a new host,
it often will take on a new form with different symptoms.
JUNE 1st, 2005
GeneOhm Sciences, a company that develops molecular diagnostic tests,
reported that it has closed its follow-on Series C funding. The funding came through Wasatch Advisors.
The company's technology is related to the new field of personalized
medicine, which is expected to dramatically reduce the time and costs associated with the identification of infections.
Molecular based DNA microarray analysis is an alternative to older culturing methods used to indentify infectious bacteria.
According to Karey Barker, Principal and Portfolio Manager, of Wasatch Advisors, "We believe that GeneOhm's portfolio of current
products, content and technology, combined with the experience they have in developing and commercializing new products will
continue to change the way medicine can be practiced." Besides, time and costs, personalized medical techniques are expected
to also provide for more accurate diagnostics and the more targeted drug selection for treatment.
GeneOhm's current products include two rapid, amplified nucleic
acid-based assays. These include the IDI-Strep B Assay for detection of Group B Streptococcus and the IDI-MRSA Assay for detection
of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
MAY 31st, 2005
Cylene Pharmaceuticals has completed a $26.3 million Series B round
of financing. The funding was led by Coastview Capital. The eleven others that participated in the funding included BioVentures
Investors, IngleWood Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Venture Partners, Morningside Venture Investments, Novartis BioVentures, Sanderling
Ventures, TDL Investors, Lakeview Capital, Research Corporation Technologies, William Harris Investors, and the Viterbi Group.
William Rice, Ph.D., President and CEO of Cylene announced the financing
at the 7th Annual C21 BioVentures Conference, "Successful completion of this financing is a major milestone for Cylene. This
funding will enable us to advance our therapeutic pipeline of quadruplex targeting agents into the clinic, beginning with
CX-3543. We anticipate nominating a second clinical candidate within the next 12 months."
CX-3543, is the company's lead product for the treatment of multiple
cancers. In that area, the company has focused its attention on quadruplex motifs, which the company notes "regulate the expression
of clusters of key oncogenes but not normal cellular genes." Cylene's Quadruplex Targeting is used to drive its apoptosis
inducing technology towards cancer cells, enabling their destruction.
MAY 31st, 2005
Led by Harbert Venture Partners, LLC, Innovative Biosensors, Inc.
(IBI) has raised $3.5 million in a Series A round of financing. The round was joined by New Markets Growth Fund and the Maryland
IBI offers pathogen detection technology based on the CANARY technology
licensed from MIT. The technology has been the basis for IBI's recent E. coli O157:H7 Detection Kit used in food safety analysis
applications. The company has indicated that it plans to offer more tests in this market as well as in the human clinical
The major benefits that IBI technologies’ promises are high-speed
testing and the ability to detect very low levels of pathogen content. According to IBI's Founder and CEO, Joe Hernandez,
"This funding will enable us to expand our commercial infrastructure, allowing us to bring IBI's technology to markets currently
in need of rapid, sensitive pathogen test results.” The company also indicates that the pathogen tests can be accomplished
in less than five minutes. The product because it is easy to use, has potential applications in the consumer market.
Will Brooke, Managing Partner of Harbert Venture Partners, commented
on the overall marketability of IBI's products, "We believe IBI's cutting-edge CANARY detection technology is applicable to
multiple markets. This, in combination with IBI's experienced management team, positioned IBI as an attractive investment
opportunity for us. We are pleased to support IBI and look forward to being a part of a company that has the potential to
revolutionize pathogen testing."
MAY 31st, 2005
Oragenics Enters into $9 Million Financing Agreement -
Probiotic Anti-Decay Technology
Fusion Capital Fund II, LLC, has entered into an agreement to purchase $9 million of Oragenics
stock over a period of up to 30 months, subject to Oragenics’ right to control the times and amount of stock sold.
Chuck Soponis, Oragenics' President commented on the funding strategy,
"Overall, this financing commitment adds flexibility and gives Oragenics the financial resources to fund the initial clinical
development of Replacement Therapy, our investigational treatment against dental decay, currently undergoing Phase I clinical
studies. It also will support the ongoing preclinical development of our novel antibiotic, Mutacin 1140.
Oragenics has developed a new type of oral rinse for the prevention
of tooth decay. In addition the company is developing an antibiotic with, as it states, "broad-spectrum activity against gram-positive
bacteria." There are two major classifications of bacteria that are responsible for a wide range of human diseases,
gram-positive and gram-negative.
MAY 27th, 2005
Genomatix Corporation, which offers genetic design tools used to
control gene expression and modulate protein interactions, reported that it has closed a Series B round from NewVa Capital
Partners, LP. The $500,000 is planned for the launch of its genetic tools. The tools are considered important in that they
enable scientists to turn on or off genes to determine the effect on the production of proteins and the resultant effect on
cells. In this way, the positive and negative effects of drugs and nutrients on specific individuals can be more precisely
MAY 27th, 2005
Ambit Biosciences on top of the $21 million it received in August
2004 reported in May it has received $10 million more in a Series C Funding round. The company, which has developed a small
molecule neuroprotectant for stroke treatment, indicated after the financing round, that neuroprotectant will enter the clinical
stage in 2006, followed by its small molecule kinase inhibitors for cancer treatment.
Participants in the round included Avalon Ventures, Canadian Medical
Discoveries Fund, Forward Ventures, GIMV, Genechem, Perseus-Soros Biopharmaceutical Fund, and Roche Venture. The long list
of investors joins in the efforts of Ambit with its notable corporate drug partners: Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, GlaxoSmithKline
MAY 26th, 2005
Phenomix Corporation with a new round of $40 million in Series B
funding, brings its total level of funding up to $65.5 million. The drug discovery company, which is focused on oral alternative
treatments as opposed to the traditional injectable treatments, presently has under development therapies for type 2 diabetes
and rheumatoid arthritis.
Primary investors in the round included JPMorgan Partners and Delphi
Ventures as well as Baker Brothers Investments Alta Partners, Sofinnova Ventures, Bay City Capital, CMEA Ventures, GBS Venture
Partners and Novartis BioVenture Fund.
MAY 26th, 2005
New York Receives $50 Million for Stem Cell Research
Three biomedical research institutes in New York City, through The Starr Foundation will receive
$50 million over a three year period to further stem cell research. The new initiative called the Tri-Institutional Stem Cell
Initiative includes The Rockefeller University, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, and Memorial Sloan-Kettering
One of the primary goals of the initiative is to combine the research
and advancements from different technologies to advance medical technology. Collaborations that the initiative encourages,
between the three institutions that compose it ,include toxicology, neuroscience, cell cycle research, chemistry, and physics.
MAY 24th, 2005
NovoStent Corporation, a company that has developed the anchored
helical stent, has closed $9.65 million of financing. The round was led by Sanderling Ventures. Other participants included
Montreux Equity Partners, The Band of Angels Fund and Peninsula Equity Partners. According to Michael Hogendijk, NovoStent's
President , the funds will be the basis for the company's efforts in moving the stent platform forward to the human clinical
trial stage. According to NovoStent, the stent "will be initially demonstrated in the superficial femoral artery (SFA) during
the Company's first human trial."
MAY 24th, 2005
According to the Associated Press, and the Seattle Business Journal,
Governor Christine Gregoire has signed a bill that establishes the Life Sciences Discovery Fund. The initial $350 million
from the fund is expected to be eventually matched with private and federal matching grants to bring the funds total to $1
billion. The life science funds are planned for those involved with medical and agricultural research in Washington
MAY 23rd, 2005
Gemin X Raises $65.2 Million for Leukemia Treatment
Gemin X Biotechnologies Inc., focused on apoptosis regulation based cancer treatments, has
raised $62.5 million in financing. The funding, which consisted of $50 million in private equity and a $15.2 million loan,
is planned to be used for the further development of the GX15-0700 used for the treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukemia
Dan Giampuzzi, President at Gemin X elaborated on the apoptotic
technology, a technology related to the regulation of the life span of dangerous cancer cells, "Gemin X's mission is to develop
innovative cancer therapeutics that can offer more effective alternatives than existing treatments, and to achieve this mission,
we've developed novel compounds that attack cancer at the heart of the apoptotic pathway. GX15-070 is designed to selectively
induce apoptosis in cancerous cells through pan-inhibition of proteins in the Bcl-2 family, the over-expression of which are
associated with tumor progression and resistance to chemotherapy. Similarly, our GX14 compounds selectively induce apoptosis
in cancerous cells despite mutations in the p53 pathway that often decrease the effectiveness of traditional therapies. This
financing provides Gemin X with the means to fully concentrate on evaluating the potential clinical benefits of these compounds."
Leading the round was the H.I.G. group of funds and the Sanderling
group of funds led the financing, with participation from Merlin BioMed Group, Pinnacle Biotech Ventures Fund and all of the
company's current investors. The loan is through Investissement Quebec's Biolevier Program, which is a government program
to promote the commercialization of life science technology.
Robert McNeil, Ph.D., General Partner of Sanderling Ventures explained
Gemin's technology in basic terms, "Many companies are trying to address cancer. Gemin X is one company that has been fortunate
enough to have discovered small molecules which inhibit the key proteins that keep cancer cells alive. Inhibiting survival
and thus driving cancer into its natural cell death pathway is a central goal of cancer research. Sanderling is proud to have
the opportunity to work with such innovative research and commercialization prospects."
MAY 23rd, 2005
Zelos Therapeutics Brings In $42.5 Million For Osteoporosis
and Psoriasis Technology
Zelos Therapeutics has completed a Series B financing round that has brought in an estimated
$42.5 million. The funding, led by Alta Partners, included funding from a long list of both new and existing investors. Frazier
Healthcare Ventures, the Ontario Teacher's Pension Plan, Prospect Venture Partners, and SR One were new investors. VenGrowth
Private Equity Partners Inc., Genesys Capital Partners Inc., Seaflower Ventures and the Business Development Bank of Canada
were existing investors that invested again.
Robert (Duffy) DuFresne, Zelos' Chief Executive Officer, said besides
osteoporosis, the funding would also be used for the development of its topical psoriasis treatment, "Our Series B financing
provides us with sufficient capital to achieve several key corporate milestones. We anticipate that our current resources
will enable us to complete Phase II clinical trials for both our lead osteoporosis candidate, Ostabolin-C, and our second
PTH analogue program, for the topical treatment of psoriasis as well as to advance our remaining two programs into the clinic."
MAY 19th, 2005
World Gold Council Funds Solaris'
Ocular Nanorod Efforts - Gold Base Noted
Just shortly after Solaris has announced one round of funding, the company has revealed that
the World Gold Council, a organization funded by the world's leading gold mining companies, has also provided funding for
its anisotropic gold nanorod technology. The golden nanorods are planned to improve the quality of all types electronic
displays and to restore vision to those with retinal diseases. Dr. Nabil M. Lawandy, CEO of Solaris Nanosciences mentioned
specifically that the funding would benefit the development effort for the retinal disease known in short as AMD, "We are
excited to be working with the support of the World Gold Council in this application of our nanomaterials for improved LCDs,
The funding will accelerate the commercialization of our nanostructure additives for higher performance displays. This effort
will also directly benefit the development of our gold-based materials for restoring visual acuity in patients suffering from
retinal diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD)." Solaris Nanosciences is developing biologically active nanostructures,
which require gold, that may be able to restore the vision of those with Macular Degeneration and Diabetic Retinopathy. Solaris
reports that over 50 million people are afflicted with these two diseases.
Dr Richard Holliday, Industrial Sector Manager of the World Gold
Council explained the rationale for the investment, "Supporting the development of new technologies based on gold will lead
to important new applications for the metal in industry. Solaris Nanosciences has a powerful nanotechnology platform and an
experienced team to successfully commercialize this technology. This will lead to exciting new applications for gold in electronic
The World Council is actively seeking new ways to promote the use
of gold in order to increase industrial demand, which is currently estimated between 350 to 400 tonnes a year - considered
low when compared to other metals.
MAY 19th, 2005
BioMimetic Pharmaceuticals, a company that develops products for
musculoskeletal disorders, reported the second closing of a Series C round of financing. The funding adds $11.8 million to
the $25.7 million raised in the first closing of the Series C round. Investors included Axiom Ventures, CMEA Ventures, HSS
Ventures, InterWest Partners, Knowledge Ventures LLC, MB Venture Partners, MC Life Science Ventures, Noro-Moseley and PTV
Samuel E. Lynch, D.M.D., D.M.Sc., CEO of BioMimetic Pharmaceuticals
outlined plans for the funding, "In addition to supporting the final phases of FDA approval and the launch of our lead product
candidate, GEM 21S, the additional funds raised will help us advance our multi-product orthopedic pipeline deep into clinical
development." GEM 21S, according to the company, has been developed for the treatment of bone defects in the jaw and maxillofacial
Besides GEM 21S inventory build-up, the company indicates that the
funds will also be used to expand its staff and corporate headquarters. Since its inception in 2001, BioMimetic has raised
$51 million in equity funding.
MAY 19th, 2005
Montigen Pharmaceuticals Inc., a company engaged in the development
of molecular inhibitors for the treatment of cancer, announced that it has closed $5.2 million in Series A financing. Montigen
has developed two inhibitors, MP-470, a small molecule tyrosine-kinase inhibitor, and MP-235, a small molecule inhibitor of
According to David Bearss, Chief Scientific Officer at Montigen,
the funding would be used for pre-clinical drug development, "This funding enables us to complete pre-clinical development
of MP-470, and further advance MP-235. In parallel we will continue to progress our internal development technologies and
robust pipeline, focusing on the optimization of additional small molecule inhibitors discovered by Montigen scientists."
Aurora-A kinase, as Montigen reports, is a gene amplified in most
human cancer cells.
MAY 18th, 2005
Tranzyme Secures $32 Million to Accelerate Clinical Development
Tranzyme Pharma, a biopharmaceutical company focused on gastrointestinal disorder treatment
technology, has completed an oversubscribed round of financing valued at $32 million. Lead investors in the round included
H.I.G. Ventures, Thomas, McNerney & Partners and Quaker BioVentures. Other investors included Business Development Bank
of Canada, Desjardins Venture Capital, Pacific Rim Ventures and The Solidarity Fund.
Tranzyme has in development orally bioavailable, small molecule
therapeutics for gastrointestinal (GI) disorders. Its products planned for clinical evaluation include TZP-101, which is designed
for the treatment of post-operative ileus. Additionally, the company has developed pre-clinical small molecule compounds for
diabetic gastroparesis, irritable bowel syndrome and functional dyspepsia. The company notes that its products correct GI
problems as opposed to just providing relief from symptoms.
MAY !6th, 2005
IDG Ventures Boston Closes $180 Million Fund - For Early
IDG Ventures Boston, a venture capital firm with its sites on early stage information and healthcare
companies has announced the final close of its second fund. That fund, valued at $180 million, received contributions from
AlpInvest Partners, FLAG Capital Management, GIC Special Investments, Grove Street for Finnish LGPI, HighVista Strategies,
International Data Group, Princeton University Investment Company, and an undisclosed Ivy League university endowment. The
new funds brings IDG's capital under management to $280 million.
High growth companies, the fund invests in, can expect to receive
between $6 million and $10 million.
IDG lists among its portfolio companies is MicroCHIPS, a company that has developed microimplantable
chips for medical applicaitons. IDG has invested in over 150 companies, which include life science companies as well as more
traditional electronic companies.
MAY 16th, 2005
Psoriasis Receives CDN $15 Million Financing for Clinical
Cytochroma Inc. has received the first tranche of $15 million (Canadian) as part of a financing
plan to continue the development of CTA018 for Phase II clinical trials in the treatment of psoriasis and to further build
on its other preclinical products. The round was led VenGrowth Private Equity Partners Inc. through The VenGrowth Advanced
Life Sciences Fund Inc.
James M. Rae, CEO of Cytochroma, in a statement about the investment,
indicated CTA018 is a Vitamin D Signal Amplifier product with significant applications to other therapeutic drugs, "We are
very pleased to be receiving this additional investment from our current investors as it supports and reinforces our current
development approach. Cytochroma has confidence in the ongoing clinical development of CTA018 and will be using the same approach
to move other Vitamin D Signal Amplifier products into hyperparathyroidism secondary to chronic kidney disease, oncology and
multiple sclerosis indications. These additional indications for our compounds will add significant value to the Company."
MAY 13th, 2005
Cellerant Therapeutics Inc., a company focused on the use of stem
cells for the treatment of cancers, genetic blood disorders and autoimmune diseases, has raised $16 million in a Series B
round of financing. The round's participants included Allen & Company, George Rathmann and CX Venture Group and MPM Capital.
The round was led by Novel Bioventures.
Pointing towards the commercialization prospects of the Cellerant's
products, Han Chiu, M.D., Managing Director of Novel Bioventures said, "Cellerant represents one of the strongest and most
impressive platforms and management teams for commercializing stem cell products. The company has significant near-term revenue
opportunities and is attracting a rich pipeline of ever more exciting technologies and breakthroughs. Novel is pleased to
have the opportunity to lead a company that has the seeds to become one if not "the" dominant player in the stem cell market,
one of the most important and exciting development areas in biotechnology today."
George Rathmann, Chairman at Cellerant, emphasized the company's
adult-derived stem cell technology, "Cellerant's hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) purification technology opens the door for
widespread clinical use of adult-derived stem cells for indications where conventional drug therapy has failed."
Plans for the funding were disclosed by Bruce Cohen, Cellerant's
CEO, "The proceeds from this financing will be used to accelerate commercial development of our HSC purification platform.
We also plan to initiate clinical trials for our first cell-based product - human Myeloid Progenitors for the treatment of
radiation- and chemotherapy-induced neutropenia. We are extremely pleased to have support for our programs from such strong
Cellerant's efforts have been in supporting the redevelopment of
the blood forming system of chemotherapy patients through the use of hematopoietic stem cells. Cellerant says that the blood
forming system is fundamental to the human immune system, which in turn is fundamental to the ability to fight off disease.
MAY 13th, 2005
Vantage Oncology, Inc., a company that runs state-of-the-art oncology
centers throughout the United States, has raised $22 million in a Series C funding round. The company plans to use the funds
to acquire cancer treatment facilities as well as to form joint ventures and develop its cancer treatment centers - basically
a continuation of its business strategy. The funding was obtained through Conning Capital Partners, New Enterprise Associates,
Salix Ventures and Versant Ventures.
Michael Fiore, CEO at Vantage Oncology noted the company's expanding
network of centers in the context of the investment, "This indicates the ongoing real excitement about Vantage's potential
in the large and growing radiation oncology market. With 10 centers currently in operation or under development, and several
more in multiple states under letters of intent, Vantage continues to expand its presence nationwide."
MAY 13th, 2005
Anacor Pharmaceuticals, focused on the use of proprietary boron
chemistry to develop drugs for dermatology applications, has secured $25 million in Series financing. The funding was co-led
by Care Capital and Venrock Associates. Other investors included Aberdare Ventures Red Abbey, Venture Partners and Rho Ventures.
J. Markham, partner, Care Capital, now a member of Anacor's board,
noted the company's market positioning, "Anacor's unique boron chemistry coupled with its advanced stage of development places
the company in a strong position to quickly bring new therapeutics to market. The experienced team at Anacor is well-versed
in the intricacies of guiding new products through the clinical development process. "
MAY 13th, 2005
AC Immune, based in Switzerland, completed round B financing valued
at CHF 21 million. The company is developing treatment for Alzheimers through vaccination or passive immunization. The immunotherapy
centers on the beta amyloid protein, fundamental to the formation of plaques.
Andrea Pfeifer, CEO of AC Immune spoke about the stage of development
their products are in, "After obtaining encouraging results in animal studies showing the unique features of AC Immune's immunotherapeutic
approach, we are very excited to move into the next phase of testing our lead molecules for clinical submission."
MAY 11th, 2005
InSite Vision Incorporated (AMEX:ISV), a ophthalmic company focused
on ocular infections, glaucoma and retinal diseases, announced that it has entered into definitive agreements for a $9 million
private financing of common stock and warrants for common stock. The financing subject to American Stock Exchange approval,
is planned for the development and completion of Phase 3 AzaSite pivotal trials for the treatment of bacterial conjunctivitis.
The company indicates that with the financing, completion of the trials and associated regulatory filings and approvals, AzaSite
(based on the drug azithromycin) would ready to be introduced into the United States market in 2006.
InSite, for the treatment of glaucoma, has focused its attention
on the TIGR gene. InSite offers its OcuGene glaucoma genetic test to detect a genetic marker in the TIGR gene.
MAY 10th, 2005
Bayhill's Multiple Sclerosis and Diabetes Effort Sees
$35.4 in Series B Funding
Bayhill Therapeutics Inc. has completed a Series B round valued at $35.4 million. The private
equity financing was led by De Novo Ventures and Lilly Ventures. Other investors included A.M. Pappas Life Science Ventures,
Boston Life Science Venture Corp, CMEA Ventures, Grand Cathay Venture Capital Company, LTD, Latterell Venture Partners, Montreux
Equity Partners, Morgenthaler Ventures, PAC-LINK Bio Management Corp, Prudence Venture Investment Corp, Quintiles' PharmaBio
Development, U.S. Venture Partners, and the Vertical Group.
Mark W. Schwartz, PhD, and President and CEO discussed
the use of the funding, "This financing supports the development of our lead product candidate currently in phase I, BHT-3009,
an antigen-specific drug for treating multiple sclerosis, through Phase II clinical testing. The financing will also support
development of our second antigen-specific therapeutic for type I diabetes, as well as the development of our oligonucleotide
Bayhill is focused on drugs for the treatment of autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis, type
1 diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, Bayhill is also developing oligonucleotide based drugs for autoimmune diseases.
MAY 9th, 2005
Senesco, a Cell Life Regulation Company, Sees $3.32 Million from Placement
Senesco Technologies, Inc. (AMEX:SNT), a company that has developed technology to increase
crop yields, apparently without expensive and controversial genetic modification, has entered into definitive agreements for
a placement of 1.57 million units. The company expects that the private placement will bring in about $3.32 million.
Senesco's technology regulates cell life, through a technique that
delays cell breakdown. Farms and grocers can take advantage of this because crops will stay fresher longer after harvesting.
Senesco stated that its technology can be used to develop superior strains of crops without any modification other than delaying
natural plant senescence.
MAY 9th, 2005
Celator Pharmaceuticals Brings in
Record Funding of $40 Million
Celator Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on cancer therapies, has
closed a $40 million round of financing. The funding, which is said to be one of the largest in the industry in the last twelve
months, will go towards research related to Celator's CombiPlex technology platform. That platform is one of the first to
utilize the ideal ratios of chemotherapy agents to treat cancer. According to Dr. Andrew Janoff, CEO at Celator, "Most cancers
are treated with combinations of drugs. Our research has shown that the current standard used to develop these regimens is
far less than optimal because it does not recognize the critical role that drug ratios play in targeting and killing cancer
cells. Celator's CombiPlex technology platform positions us to develop an entirely new generation of cancer therapies that
will incorporate the ideal ratios of chemotherapy agents and make it possible to maintain those ratios in the body to treat
cancer more effectively."
Celator's lead product, called CPX-1, for colorectal cancer is undergoing
Phase I trials at the British Columbia Cancer Agency in Vancouver and at McGill University in Montreal. CPX-351, a treatment
for acute myeloid leukemia, is in development at the company.
MAY 4th, 2005
Gentris Corporation, a pharmaceutical safety company, has received
funding of $5 million for its venture into the personalized medicine market. Gentris closed a $5 million Series C funding
round with Mitsui & Co. (U.S.A.), Inc.
Gentris works with pharmaceutical companies to determine the effects
of drugs on patients with different genetic make-ups. According to Michael Murphy, Gentris' CEO, "Gentris already performs
drug metabolism and safety tests like the ones the FDA is recommending. These tests improve patient safety by identifying
at-risk patients. At the same time, pharmaceutical companies can conduct more efficient trials by eliminating the population
that won't respond well to the drug. This selective process--driven by science--will get drugs to market faster and into the
hands of patients who will benefit most from them."
Gentris also plans to develop pharmacogenomic diagnostic testing
kits for hospitals and doctors. These kits will be used by doctors to determine, at the doctor's office itself via a DNA analysis
test, how well the patient will respond to a prescription drug. Doctors will be able to select the best drug based on the
results of the DNA Genetic oriented drug test. genetic Mr. Murphy indicated that personal medicine was very close to a reality,
"Personalized medicine is coming faster than people realize."
MAY 3rd, 2005
Maxim Pharmaceuticals Receives $1 Million Milestone -
High Throughput Screening System Pointed To
Maxim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAXM) (SSE:MAXM) reported that
it had achieved a $1 million development milestone under an agreement with Myriad Genetics. The milestone centers around the
safety and pharmacokinetic profile of MPC-6827, Maxim's tumor drug. Larry G. Stambaugh, Maxim's CEO indicated the direction
of the company and revealed the compound screening rate of the company's screening system, "We are very pleased with Myriad's
progress in the MPC-6827 program and look forward to the Phase 1 study results. In the meantime we are continuing our efforts
to advance other anti-cancer compounds into the clinic, either independently or through additional partnerships, over the
next 12 to 18 months. Further, we have recently initiated a new campaign to screen about 60,000 new compounds using our proprietary
caspase-3 screening technology, and we hope to discover new lead candidates and molecular targets that hold similar innovative
promise as oncology drugs."
Maxim points out that its methodology is to trigger cancer cell
death through a naturally occurring process called apoptosis.
APRIL 29th, 2005
Nulens Ltd., an Israeli medical device company focused on lens technology,
has received a $2.8 million investment from Elron Electronic Industries Ltd. (NASDAQ and TASE: ELRN). Doron Birger, Elron's
CEO indicated that Nulens had significant potential, "The new investment in Nulens is consistent with our strategy of new
investments in companies with innovative technologies that have the potential to create new paradigms in their industry. We
believe that together with Elron, Nulens has the potential to become a major company that will create significant value for
Nulens' Intra-Ocular Lens (IOL) is currently undergoing pre-clinical
trials. The IOL is primarily designed for cataract and presbyopia procedures.
APRIL 25th, 2005
ReOx Ltd., based in the United Kingdom, entered into a licensing agreement
valued at $9 million with an undisclosed international biopharmaceutical company. The company is investigating the ability
for drugs to effect the ability to process oxygen and the resultant ability to fight off diseases that result from a depletion
of oxygen in the cells. These include anaemia, cancer and strokes to name just a few.
APRIL 25th, 2005
Merrimack Pharmaceuticals, Inc. reported that a recent equity and debt financing,
which consisted of $28.3 million of Series D Preferred Stock, brought in $28.3 million. The funding brings the companies total
capital equity brought in to $87 million. Robert Mulroy, CEO commented, "This financing provides the Company with the resources
to advance our pipeline and research activities through several key milestones. We are pleased by the strong and continuing
support from our investors."
Merrimack focuses on autoimmune disease and cancer. Presently, one of
its drugs, MM-093, is under evaluation for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.
APRIL 25th, 2005
AXM Pharma, Inc. (AMEX: AXJ) has completed a $3.125 million round, which
was obtained through an offering of convertible notes and detachable warrants. Douglas MacLellan, Vice Chairman of AXM Pharma,
Inc. indicated that the company expects more funding, "We are pleased to complete this round of financing and the two new
distribution agreements recently announced. With the current financing in place and potential for another $15.12 million in
funding from this round, we can continue fulfilling our fast-growing purchase orders that have come in since our factory opened
on March 1st. We look forward to our best year on record in 2005."
AXM Pharma, through its operations in China, lists its products as injectables,
capsules, tablets, liquids and medicated skin products.
April 25th, 2005
Uroplasty, Inc. (OTC:UPST) (BULLETIN BOARD: UPST), a maker of minimally
invasive medical devices for the incontinence market, has obtained $7.5 million in funding through a Common Stock and warrant
Sam B. Humphries, President and Chief Executive Officer of Uroplasty,
Inc commented on the use of funds, and its agreement with CystoMedix, Inc. "As we plan and execute on new marketing strategies
for our developing product lines, these funds will enhance our overall capabilities. This transaction also supplies us with
the capital to meet our financial commitments and commence our work under the exclusive manufacturing and distribution agreement
we entered into earlier this week with CystoMedix, Inc. for its percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation technology to treat
APRIL 25th, 2005
American HealthChoice, Inc. (OTC:AMHI) announced that it obtained a $500,000 line
of credit from Northern Healthcare Capital, LLC. The funds are planned for the marketing of the DRX9000 Spinal Decompression
System, a non-surgical method, which relieves lower back pain and pressure between the discs of the spine. The product is
marketed through RehabCo, a subsidiary of the company.
APRIL 18th, 2005
Xenomis with Inexpensive DNA Tests Gathers $2.95 Million in
Xenomics, Inc. (OTCBB:XNOM), which is now focused on the development of non-intensive
DNA test technologies, has reported the close of a private placement that has resulted in $2.95 million in new financing for
Dr. Randy White, CEO of Xenomics summed up the company's development focus and how the
funding will be used, "This funding will help us achieve the next round of milestones in the commercialization of our proprietary
Transrenal DNA testing platform for medical and life science applications. We are developing highly effective, safe and inexpensive
tests that have the potential to improve health care for millions of patients worldwide who are living with AIDS and other
diseases, for pregnant women who need to learn about the health of their unborn children, and for a range of other applications."
Xenomics discovered the presence of Tr-DNA, which unlike other types of DNA is passed
through the kidneys and out of the body instead of found just in the blood. The detection of Tr-DNA in the urine, give scientists
the capability to eliminate the need for blood samples (considered a biological health hazard in the medical world), and use
safer urine samples instead. This in turn eliminates the need to use needles, which are also biological health and environmental
hazards. Dr. Samuil Umansky, a scientist at the company, headed the team that discovered Tr-DNA.