San Diego Life Sciences Roundup: Optimer, Pfenex, OncoSec, & More

10/19/12Follow @bvbigelow

Venture funding for San Diego’s life sciences companies continued to flow at a healthy rate during the third quarter that ended in September, according to data released earlier today. We’ve got that and more.

—Former Optimer Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: OPTR) chairman Michael Chang, who was ousted by the company’s board earlier this year, will lead Taiwan’s Optimer Biotechnology (OBI), according to a report in the English language China Times. Optimer Pharmaceuticals recently disclosed plans to sell its 43 percent stake in OBI. The China Times identifies the buyer as Huei Hong Investment, led by Reuntex Financial Group CEO Samuel Yin, and says Chang will return to lead OBI. The sale of Optimer’s shares will sever all ties between OBI and its U.S. parent company.

—San Diego-based Pfenex said the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) has awarded the company an initial $2.18 million to develop an alternative, needle-free delivery method for its anthrax vaccine. The contract could be worth as much as $22.9 million if all options are exercised. In a statement, Pfenex CEO Bertrand C. Liang said, “A recombinant solution for the production of … Next Page »

Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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