Oncor Inc. is spinning off its cancer testing services subsidiary,OncorMed Inc., with an initial public offering (IPO) of more than 1.3million shares of OncorMed common stock at $6 per share.OncorMed, of Gaithersburg, Md., announced this week it filed aregistration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission.In addition to the IPO, OncorMed is granting the underwriters, Gaines,Berland Inc., of New York, the option of purchasing up to 200,250additional shares to cover over-allotments as well as warrants to buyanother 133,500 shares at 110 percent of the IPO price.Oncor chairman Stephen Turner said that after the public offering,Oncor, also of Gaithersburg, will own approximately 50 percent ofOncorMed and 4.5 million shares of stock will remain outstanding.Turner said OncorMed is involved in laboratory-based genetic cancertesting and intends to offer the services to physicians, hospitals,managed care organizations and other members of the medicalcommunity.According to the company's prospectus, "Services being developedinclude the detection of genetic mutations that are indicative of certaincancers, screening to detect certain cancers at the molecular level andgenetic margin analysis of surgical samples to determine the success ofsurgery."Formed in 1993, OncorMed has been providing colon cancersusceptibility testing and mutation analysis of the p53 tumor suppressergene for physicians working under Institutional Review Board-approved clinical protocols. Mutations of the p53 gene are found inabout half of all cancers, including colon, breast and lung cancer.The company also is developing a functional gene assay technologydesigned not only to detect genetic mutations, but also to determine ifthey are biologically significant.Timothy Triche, formerly chairman of pathology at Children's Hospitalin Los Angeles, is chairman and CEO of OncorMed. DouglasDolginow, formerly with Nichols Institute of San Juan Capistrano,Calif., is president and chief operating officer. n

-- Charles Craig

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