Banking on Positive Clinical Data, Cogent Raises $150 Million in Upsized Public Offering
June 14, 2022
One day after reporting reported positive initial data from its ongoing phase 2 clinical trial evaluating lead compound bezuclastinib in patients with a rare hematologic disorder, Cogent Biosciences raised $150 million in an underwritten public offering.
The biotech took advantage of a bump up in its stock price to sell 15.2 million shares of its common stock at $8.25 per share. In addition, in lieu of issuing common stock to certain investors, Cogent is offering pre-funded warrants to purchase 3 million shares of its common stock at a purchase price of $8.24 per pre-funded warrant, which equals the public offering price per share of the common stock less the $0.01 exercise price per share of each pre-funded warrant.
The aggregate gross proceeds to Cogent from the offering are expected to be approximately $150 million, before deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and other estimated offering expenses, upsized from $125 million. In addition, Cogent has granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 2.7 million shares of its common stock at the public offering price, less underwriting discounts.
Cogent intends to use the net proceeds from the offering for development, regulatory, and commercial preparation activities relating to bezuclastinib and other product candidates, as well as for working capital and general corporate purposes.
Cogent had just reported positive initial data from its ongoing phase 2 APEX clinical trial evaluating its most advanced pipeline candidate, the selective KIT D816V inhibitor bezuclastinib, in patients with the rare hematologic disorder advanced systemic mastocytosis, a serious disease caused by unchecked proliferation of mast cells.
Bezuclastinib is designed to potently inhibit the KIT D816V mutation that is responsible for the disorder as well as other mutations in KIT exon 17, which are also found in patients with advanced gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST), a type of cancer with strong dependence on oncogenic KIT signaling.
As of the data cutoff date of May 24, 2022, eight of 11 patients who had been treated for at least two cycles achieved greater than or equal to 50 percent reduction in bone mast cells by central review. Six of these patients achieved complete clearance of bone marrow mast cell aggregates. All demonstrated decreases in KIT D816V variant allele fraction by droplet digital polymerase chain reaction. Bezuclastinib was generally well-tolerated at all doses and all patients remained on treatment with treatment duration ranging from 0.5 to 4.8 months.
Author: Rare Daily Staff
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