Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Soligenix wraps up $7.1 mln financing to advance drug candidates

Soligenix (OTCQB:SNGX), a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company, has put to bed a $7.1 million public offering of its common stock and warrants announced late last week, with a chunk of the funds hailing from a firm linked to billionaire life sciences investor Randal J. Kirk. 
The company, which is focused on developing products to treat inflammatory diseases and biodefense threats, issued 6.77 million shares of common stock and five-year warrants to purchase up to 5.08 million shares. 
Investors that participated in the offering include an affiliated fund of Third Security, a venture capital firm founded by Kirk, as well as members of Soligenix's management and board. The company said Wednesday that it plans to appoint a Third Security designee to its board. 
“We are pleased with this vote of confidence and continued support from our institutional investors including an affiliated fund of Third Security, a venture capital firm founded by R.J. Kirk,” said Soligenix president and CEO Christopher J. Schaber, in emailed comments this morning. “With a strengthened balance sheet, our top priority is advancing our two lead programs in pediatric Crohn's disease with SGX203 and oral mucositis with SGX942, both important areas of unmet medical need.” 
Indeed, Soligenix will use the new funds raised to further develop its pipeline of drugs, as well as for general working capital. Its two lead product candidates are its oral BDP treatment for pediatric Crohn's disease, which is currently in a phase 1 clinical trial, and a treatment for oral mucositis, for which the company plans to start a phase 2 clinical study in the second half of this year. Earlier this month, the company received fast track designation from U.S. regulatory authorities for the treatment for oral mucositis, which is seen as a result of radiation and/or chemo in head and neck cancer patients. 
The biopharmaceutical company also recently inked a collaboration deal to develop a treatment for melioidosis, an often lethal disease, with Intrexon, which is run by billionaire investor Kirk.
In its biodefense unit, Soligenix is working on its Thermovax vaccine thermostabilization technology. According to the company, for vaccines that are intended for long-term stockpiling, such as for use in biodefense or in pandemic situations, the use of ThermoVax, which has been tested in combination with the company's RiVax and VeloThrax vaccines, can lead to easier storage and the distribution of strategic national stockpile vaccines in emergency situations.

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