Protein Design Labs Inc. said Tuesday that it has filed for aninitial public offering of 2.5 million shares of common stockwith an estimated price of $10 to $12 per share.

The Mountain View, Calif., company is involved in computer-based design of proteins, primarily monoclonal antibodies, totreat autoimmune disease and inflammation, cancer, and viralinfections.

PDL has developed five humanized mouse antibodies, whichare produced from a human antibody gene that has beengenetically modified to contain murine antibody binding sites.

It is also developing three recombinant immunotoxins, whichare antibodies genetically linked to toxins. The compounds areabout 100 times more effective in limiting growth andultimately killing cancer cells than chemically linkedimmunotoxins, said spokeswoman Laura Donavan.

PDL's first product, a humanized antibody to the IL-2 receptorfor treating organ transplant rejection and autoimmunediseases, has been licensed to Hoffmann-La Roche, which willbegin Phase I trials in the first quarter of 1992, Donavan toldBioWorld. Roche has an equity position in the company.

PDL holds exclusive therapeutic rights from the Sloan-KetteringInstitute for Cancer Research for a humanized antibody for thetreatment of acute and chronic myelogenous leukemia, andplans to begin Phase I trials next year.

The company also has development and licensing agreementswith Sandoz Pharma Ltd. for a humanized antibody to treatcertain types of cancer, and with Yamanouchi PharmaceuticalCo. Ltd. to develop a humanized antibody to treatcardiovascular disease. PDL has 15 U.S. patents pending andmore than 100 patents pending worldwide.

PDL was founded in 1987 by scientists from StanfordUniversity and the National Institutes of Health with $4 millionin venture financing from Robertson Stephens & Co. andMayfield Fund.

Underwriters for the IPO, Merrill Lynch & Co. and Cowen & Co.,have a 375,000-share overallotment option.

-- Kris Herbst BioWorld Washington Bureau

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