With two Phase III trials under way for diabetic kidneydisease, Alteon Inc. is jumping into the equity marketswith a follow-on public offering of 2.5 million shareshoping to raise more than $30 million.

The Ramsey, N.J.-based company's lead product,pimagedine, is a compound designed to inhibit advancedglycosylation end-products (AGE), whose accumulationcan result in damage to organs, blood vessels and nerves.Over-production of AGEs is tied to elevated glucoselevels, such as those found in diabetics.

Alteon is developing pimagedine under a collaborationwith Germany-based Hoechst Marion Roussel Inc. Thecompanies are conducting two Phase III studies fortreating advanced kidney disease associated with Type Iand Type II diabetes. More than 1,500 patients at 125medical centers in the U.S. and Canada are participatingin the trials.

In the prospectus filed with its Securities and ExchangeCommission registration for the follow-on offering,Alteon said it will have five clinical trials ongoing by theend of this year with oral pimagedine. The other diabetes-related indications targeted are microalbuminuria, anearly stage of kidney disease; end-stage renal disease; anddyslipidemia, a condition that affects coronary arterydisease.

Based on the $14.25 closing price Thursday of Alteon'sstock (NASDAQ:ALTN), the company would raisenearly $37 million in the sale of 2.5 million shares.Alteon's stock ended the day up 38 cents. Following theoffering, Alteon will have 15.4 million sharesoutstanding.

At the end of the second quarter, June 30, 1995, Alteonreported having about $32 million in cash and a net lossfor the first half of this year of $5.3 million.

Alteon also is developing pimagedine as a treatment forinflammatory bowel disease, skin diseases and stroke. _Charles Craig

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