DNA probe diagnostic company Aprogenex Inc. announcedTuesday that it has filed a registration statement with theSecurities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for an initial publicoffering of 1.45 million shares of common stock.

Aprogenex of Houston expects to price the stock between $10and $12 per share. H.J. Meyers & Co. Inc. is the managingunderwriter of the offering.

Aprogenex's rapid intact gene hybridization technology, whichit licensed from the University of Texas' M.D. Anderson CancerCenter, uses chemically manufactured probes and a "cocktail"reagent solution that allows the analysis of single cells.

Many of the company's tests are designed to identify prenatalgenetic disorders in fetal cells extracted from maternal blood.Such a method is intended to provide a non-invasive test thatwill avoid the risks associated with amniocentesis.

Aprogenex has already started clinical tests of certain of itsprenatal genetic screening products. It is also developingdiagnostics for detecting human papilloma virus on pap smears,for identifying the stages of HIV infection and monitoring theeffectiveness of therapy by identifying viral load in circulatingblood, and for identifying bacterial infections, both Gramnegative and Gram positive.-- Jennifer Van Brunt

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