By Brady Huggett

Adolor Corp. priced its 6-million-share initial offering at $15 per share, raising $90 million, and successfully ending the trip down its long, rocky IPO road.

"We are very pleased to complete the offering in a very choppy market," said Peter Schied, chief financial officer at Adolor.

Shares began trading Tuesday under the Nasdaq symbol ADLR. The public offering is being underwritten by Merrill Lynch & Co., of New York; Lehman Brothers, of New York; and Pacific Growth Equities Inc., of San Francisco.

"The funding will be used to further the development of our lead compound, ADL 8-2698, for narcotic bowel dysfunction and postsurgical ileus, and also to continue the development of the other products in our pipeline," Schied said. "This capital will take us into 2002."

Adolor, of Malvern, Pa., is in a quiet period and officials could not comment further.

It had $41 million in cash and 20.8 million shares outstanding before the offering. The company's stock gained $2.375, or 16 percent, Tuesday to close at $17.375.

In early February, Adolor filed for its initial public offering, registering for 6 million shares at an expected price range of $12 to $14, seeking $72 million to $84 million. The next nine months proved to be eventful.

In April it changed its proposed Nasdaq symbol from ADOR to ADLR. Five days later, the offering was postponed as a barrage of companies pulled IPOs off the table in a tough market. In July, Adolor raised $36.6 million through a private placement, its sixth and largest round of financing. Finally, it pushed its IPO through and priced above the estimated price range, collecting at least $6 million more through patience than original estimates. (See BioWorld Today, July 12, 2000; April 14, 2000; and Feb. 9, 2000.)

Adolor discovers, develops and plans to commercialize proprietary pharmaceutical products for the treatment of pain and the side effects caused by current narcotic pain treatments.

Adolor has 10 clinical or late-stage preclinical drug candidates. Its lead product, ADL 8-2698, is in a Phase II/III trial for opioid-induced bowel dysfunctions and ileus. ADL 10-0101 is in Phase II trials for postsurgical pain and also in preclinical development for ophthalmic pain and dermal itch. ADL 2-1294 is in two Phase II trials, one for ophthalmic itch and one for dermal pain, and in preclinical development for post-arthroscopic surgical pain, mucositis and dental pain. Two final compounds, ADL 10-0116 and ADL 10-0398, are in preclinical development for arthritis and visceral pain.