A company spun off from Coulter Corp. to develop a cancer drugsaid Thursday it raised $22 million in a Series C private financing.
Coulter Pharmaceutical Inc., of Palo Alto, Calif., was spun off fromprivately held Coulter Corp., of Miami, last year to develop aradioimmunotherapeutic for non-Hodgkin's B-cell lymphoma.InterWest Partners, of Menlo Park, Calif., provided $6 million infunding before this round. (See BioWorld Today, April 14, 1995, p.1.)
The $22 million financing was provided by InterWest and a group ofinvestors in the San Francisco Bay area: Sand Hill Group; BrentwoodAssociates; BankAmerica Ventures; Weiss, Peck & Greer; DelphiBioVentures; MedVenture Associates; Axiom Venture Partners; andthe Coral Group.
The company's product is radioactive iodine linked to a monoclonalantibody (B1). Most of the early work was done at the University ofMichigan by Mark Kaminski, associate professor of internalmedicine at the Ann Arbor campus.
Bobbie Wallace, vice president at Coulter, said six additional sitesare being opened for a Phase II/III study to confirm positive dataseen from 57 patients treated at Michigan. She said timelines goingforward have not yet been defined.
Wallace said proceeds from the offering probably will get Coulter tothe point where it is well into pivotal studies of theradioimmunotherapeutic and ready to file for an initial publicoffering.
She said Coulter has another anti-cancer product currently beingstudied in animals and is in negotiations to acquire other products forcancer. She would not disclose more about other candidates in thecompany's pipeline. She also declined to disclose additional dataabout the lead product because results from an additional 47 patientsstudied at Michigan have been submitted for publication.
Results from a small group of patients in a Phase I/II study werereported in the August 1993 New England Journal of Medicine.Those patients failed to respond to multiple regimens ofchemotherapy.
Coulter said 50 percent of those who received therapeutic doses ofthe radioimmunotherapeutic had complete responses, with nodetectable signs of tumors, and 25 percent had partial responses inwhich the tumors shrunk by more than 50 percent. The durationranged from eight to 13 months at the time of publication. n
-- Jim Shrine
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