Alteon Inc., which late last Thursday priced its initial publicoffering at $15, is the latest beneficiary of the biotech stockfeeding frenzy.

The stock opened on Friday at $26.50 and hit a high of $30.25before closing at $28.75 on a volume of 4.7 million shares.

The offering was one of the year's larger IPOs, raising $45million on the sale of 3 million shares. The company hadoriginally proposed to sell 2.5 million shares priced between$12 and $14 per share.

Alteon is developing therapeutics and diagnostics for thecomplications of diabetes and aging, with an initial focus ondiabetes. The companyLs products are designed to inhibit,reverse and measure damage to cells, tissues and organs,caused by advanced glycosylation end products. AGEs areformed as a result of glucose in the bodyLs circulatory system.They damage proteins by forming permanent attachments, orcross-links, with other proteins.

Aminoguanidine, Alteon's lead compound, inhibits AGEformation and cross-linking. The company expects the drug toenter Phase II/III clinical trials in the first half of 1992.

Alteon (NASDAQ:ALTN) has strategic alliances to develop itsproducts with Yamanouchi Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. and MarionMerrell Dow Inc.

After the offering, Alteon of Northvale, N.J., has 11.5 millionshares outstanding. Underwriters Alex. Brown & Sons Inc. andLehman Brothers have a 450,000-share overallotment option.

-- Karen Bernstein BioWorld Staff

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