Arcturus Pharmaceutical Corp. announced Tuesday that it has filed aregistration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commissionfor a proposed initial public offering (IPO) of 2 million shares ofcommon stock.If the offering is completed at the proposed price of $8 per shareArcturus of Woburn, Mass., would net about $14.7 million, whichwould fund the company for two years. The company currently hasabout $1.8 million in cash and 3.03 million shares outstanding.The offering is being underwritten by D. Blech & Co. Inc., which nowhas pending six IPOs of early-stage biotechnology companies (fourwere filed in March). Blech also has been lead manager for three publicofferings completed this year.Arcturus was formed in 1991 to develop and commercialize productsfor dermatological disorders and other diseases, based uponmodification of existing compounds and formulations, as well as thedevelopment of new chemical entities. The company has raised about$9.4 million to date.Arcturus has three core programs: immunosuppressants, prodrugs(compounds that must undergo chemical conversions by metabolicprocesses before becoming active agents) and cutaneous deliverytechnologies.Delivery technologies being developed include a topical anti-pruritic(itch) that is in Phase I clinical trials, and a product for cutaneous T celllymphoma, for which an investigational new drug (IND) application isexpected to be filed within a year.Immunosuppressants being developed include APC60002 for atopic orcontact dermatitis, for which the company hopes to file an IND withina year; APC6001, which is in preclinical development forimmunologically mediated disorders such as eczema; and APC6200,which is in the research stage for the same indications.Ongoing prodrug programs include APC6101, for which an IND filingis expected in 1995 for phototoxicity, psoriasis and dermatitis;APC6100, in pilot human studies for psoriasis and oral lichen planus;and APC6102, in preclinical development for hair loss in addition tothe indications of APC6101.

-- Jim Shrine

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