Vertex Gets Strong Results From Hepatitis C Trial, Anadys Explores Alternatives, Funding Helps to Revive La Jolla Pharmaceutical, & More San Diego Life Sciences News

Xconomy San Diego — 

We saw mostly funding news for San Diego’s life sciences community over the past week, and it was light fare. Get our latest roundup here, and enjoy your Memorial Day weekend.

Vertex Pharmaceuticals, which is based in Cambridge, MA, and operates a research facility in San Diego, said its experimental drug for hepatitis C cured 75 percent of the patients in the last stage of clinical testing required for FDA approval. Luke detailed the results from a pivotal study of 1,095 patients.

Anadys Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: [[ticker: ANDS]]), the San Diego biotech developing a drug to treat hepatitis C, said it has hired an adviser to explore “strategic alternatives” for the company. Such alternatives range from a potential sale of the company or selling or licensing its experimental hepatitis C drug, according to a regulatory filing. Anadys also said it entered into agreements with certain institutional investors to raise about $12.5 million.

La Jolla Pharmaceutical, which now trades on the over-the-counter bulletin board, said it plans to raise as much as $16.3 million as it seeks to revive its fortunes. The San Diego Union-Tribune said the San Diego biotech found institutional investors to commit up to $6 million toward efforts to restart its business.

Cyntellect, a San Diego-based provider of biotech research instruments, raised an additional $9 million in equity, debt, and rights as part of a $16 million round the company raised last year. Cyntellect’s instruments are designed to analyze, purify, and grow cells for life sciences research.

—San Diego’s newest non-profit biotech group, the San Diego Entrepreneurs Exchange, organized a presentation and discussion on the fine art of grantsmanship—apply for and winning federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grants. The tips they offered included a Top 10 list of dos and don’ts from Scott Struthers, the founder and chief scientist at San Diego-based Crinetics Pharmaceuticals.

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