By Kim Coghill

Washington Editor

Eos Biotechnology Inc. said Thursday it completed a $27.5 million private placement of preferred stock to fund its work in genomics, bioinformatics and drug discovery.

The South San Francisco-based company will use the proceeds to further develop its antibody therapeutics and expand its pipeline, which includes ongoing research into breast and prostate cancer, according to John Whelan, vice president and CFO. Whelan would not disclose the company's cash position following the financing, but did say it is enough for "several years."

The company in September 1999 completed a $27 million round of financing, and said at that time it had raised $37.5 million to date since its founding in 1997. (See BioWorld Today, Sept. 28, 1999, p. 1.)

Eos Biotechnology is a private company that develops, applies and integrates a number of high-throughput genomics, bioinformatics and biological processes to build a pipeline of novel therapeutics and diagnostics in the areas of oncology, angiogenesis and inflammation.

Company collaborators Affymetrix Inc., Biogen Inc. and Medarex Inc. participated in this investment round along with new investors U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray and Robertson Stephens Inc. The largest shareholders, owning about 10 percent, are Bay City Capital, ProQuest Investments, Venrock Associates and Zesiger Capital Group.

"Our investors see that long term our approach will be profitable in the market," Whelan said. "Our discovery methods identify targets and use antibodies as a measure of treating disease."

In a prepared statement, Mark Simon, managing director and head of life sciences investment banking at Robertson Stephens, said, "Eos is one of the most advanced companies in translating the multitude of benefits from the recently completed human genome into promising discoveries. Eos has demonstrated that it can rapidly identify and validate novel targets and is now building its pipeline of therapeutic antibodies."

Earlier this month, Eos established a multiyear research and development collaboration with Biogen to identify novel targets for antibody and protein therapeutics in breast cancer. The deal is worth up to $55 million for Eos, not including royalties. (See BioWorld Today, Sept. 14, 2000, p. 1.)

Eos also has collaborations with several other companies, including Affymetrix for the development and manufacture of GeneChip DNA Array; Medarex for the development of fully human antibodies directed against genome-derived targets for treating certain cancers; and Aventis-Pasteur, for genome-derived targets for the development of cancer vaccines. (See BioWorld Today, June 7, 2000; and February 15, 2000.)

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