By Kim Coghill

Washington Editor

Igen International Inc. filed a shelf registration statement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that will give the company authority, at its discretion, to sell up to 3 million share of its common stock.

The sale of 3 million shares at Tuesday's opening price would bring in about $39.6 million.

Igen, of Gaithersburg, Md., develops and markets detection systems based on its proprietary Origen technology, which can assay biological substances including small molecules, proteins, nucleic acids and microorganisms.

Net proceeds from any offering will be used for research and development, product manufacturing, working capital and general corporate purposes. Igen also may use a portion of the proceeds to acquire or invest in business, products and technologies.

But Stephen Push, Igen's director of investor relations, said there are no plans at this time to sell any shares, "but we may sell some portion of it at some point in the future."

A year ago Igen raised $35 million in a private placement of about 1.1 million shares. (See BioWorld Today, Jan. 13, 2000.)

Igen's stock (NASDAQ:IGEN) closed Tuesday at $11.062, down $1.25.

In a separate announcement Tuesday, Igen said it will continue its collaborative effort with Tarrytown, N.Y.-based Bayer Diagnostics to explore new products for the hospital point-of-care testing market.

Push said Bayer will pay $2 million for the extension, and sometime this spring Igen expects to announce another comprehensive deal with Bayer.

The additional resources will be used for development of a marketing strategy and product design. The product design will be based on Igen's Tricorder diagnostic detection module and Bayer's clinical products, and intended to improve clinical medical practice in the hospital.

The Tricorder is based on the Origen technology.