CoCensys Inc. registered to sell 2 million shares in anoffering to select institutional investors.

The pricing strategy for the offering was not disclosed.However, based on Tuesday's $8.50 opening price ofCoCensys' stock the company would raise $17 million.The stock (NASAQ:COCN) gained 25 cents afterTuesday's announcement and lost 75 cents Wednesday toclose at $8.

Hambrecht & Quist LLC, of New York, is placementagent for the offering.

On Sept. 30, 1995, CoCensys reported 19.3 millionshares outstanding and about $6.9 million in cash andequivalents. The company's net loss for the first ninemonths of 1995 was $16.6 million.

CoCensys' development program focuses on two classesof compounds: Epalons, for epilepsy, anxiety and sleepdisorders; and excitatory amino acid antagonists, forstroke and head injury. The company has two majorcorporate partners and through each alliance CoCensysgot rights to co-promote drugs for central nervous systemdisorders.

In May 1994 CoCensys entered into a collaboration withCiba-Geigy Ltd., of Basel, Switzerland, that includeddevelopment of ACEA 1021, a glycine-site N-Methyl-D-Aspartate (NMDA) inhibitor. Glycine antagonists havebeen found to inhibit nerve cell death in animal models ofstroke.

Last month CoCensys reported that Phase I studiesshowed ACEA 1021 was well tolerated and had no sideeffects. CoCensys got the compound in June 1994 whenit acquired all the outstanding stock of AceaPharmaceuticals Inc., which now is a wholly ownedsubsidiary.

The deal with Ciba also included a provision allowingCoCensys to co-promote Ciba drugs to psychiatrists inthe U.S. CoCensys expected to realize nearly $20 millionthis year from the various aspects of the collaboration.

In October CoCensys struck a deal with Morris Plains,N.J.-based Warner-Lambert Co.'s Parke-Davis division.That included an arrangement allowing CoCensys to co-promote Cognex to neurologists for the treatment ofAlzheimer's disease. The research and development partof that collaboration focuses on subtype selective NMDAreceptor antagonists. n

-- Jim Shrine

(c) 1997 American Health Consultants. All rights reserved.