By Randall Osborne

Nearing the end of a busy and lucrative year, Gene Logic Inc. has completed its initial public offering and raised $24 million, or two-thirds of the maximum sought, when the company registered for the offering in early October.

Columbia, Md.-based Gene Logic priced its 3 million shares at $8 each. The company had hoped to sell the shares at a price between $10 and $12 each. (See BioWorld Today, Oct. 9, 1997, p. 1.)

Focusing on functional genomics, Gene Logic uses technology called Restriction Enzyme Analysis of Differentially Expressed Sequences (READS) to generate genomics data for its database products and to find drug targets and drug leads for its collaborators.

In September, Gene Logic entered a pact worth up to $100 million with Japan Tobacco Co. Ltd., of Osaka, for the development of a database of gene expression characteristic of renal disease. (See BioWorld Today, Sept. 10, 1997, p. 1.)

In June, the company made a $75 million deal with Cincinnati-based Procter & Gamble Co. to develop genetic targets for drug development in heart failure and two other undisclosed diseases. (See BioWorld Today, June 16, 1997, p. 1.)

As of September 30, Gene Logic had realized $774,000 from the two partnerships, compared to none for the first nine months of last year. The company completed a private placement in July, raising $20 million.

The READS technology creates a gene expression profile, or molecular topography "snapshot" of all the genes in a tissue sample. Normal and diseased tissues then are compared through a series of snapshots, or a "molecular movie," to track the changes in expression as the disease develops and to determine which genes are associated with it.

Gene Logic also is developing a reusable Flow-thru Chip for high-throughput analysis of the known changes in expression of known genes, along with a suite of genomic databases to speed up the process of target identification and prioritization, discovery of lead compounds and development of drugs.

Underwriters for the initial public offering were BancAmerica Robertson Stephens, of San Francisco; and Hambrecht & Quist LLC and UBS Securities LLC, both of New York.

As of Sept. 30, Gene Logic had $22.14 million in cash, with a net loss of $4.69 million for the first nine months of 1997.

Gene Logic's stock (NASDAQ:GLGC) closed Friday at $7.625, down $1.375. *