Interferon Sciences Inc. plans to reacquire North American rights toits approved interferon product and start Phase III trials in largerindications with proceeds from a public offering completed Friday.
The New Brunswick, N.J., company grossed $16 million from thesale of eight million shares at $2 each. Interferon Sciences had a shelfregistration of six million shares in February but converted that to theunderwritten offering of two million shares. Sunrise Securities Corp.,of New York, underwrote the stock sale.
Interferon Sciences' natural interferon product, Alferon N Injection,is approved in the U.S. for treating genital warts. The PurdueFrederick Co., of Norwalk, Conn., has rights to Alferon N in the U.S.and Canada. Interferon Sciences already reacquired rights elsewhere.
Lawrence Gordon, CEO of Interferon Sciences, said $3.7 millionfrom the offering will be used to buy back U.S. and Canadian rightsfrom Purdue Frederick. That transaction should take place this week,he said. The company will continue to use Purdue Frederickdistribution infrastructure for at least one year.
Gordon said Interferon Sciences expects to start, perhaps within amonth, Phase III studies of Alferon N for both hepatitis C and HIV.
After buying back rights from Purdue Frederick, Interferon Scienceswill have nearly $15 million in cash and equivalents, enough to last atleast two years, Gordon said. The company has about 42.4 millionshares outstanding.
Interferon Sciences, in an August 1995 financing, grossed about$14.4 million from the sale of 12 million shares at $1.20 each. Itsstock (NASDAQ:IFSC) lost 6 cents Friday to close at $2.56 pershare. _ Jim Shrine
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