San Diego Life Sciences Roundup: Otonomy, Verdezyne, and IPOs

5/2/14Follow @bvbigelow

It was another busy week for San Diego’s life sciences sector. Here’s my roundup.

—The federal Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act that was enacted two years ago has made it easier for life sciences companies to “test the waters” with potential investors in stealth mode before launching their IPOs. A record-setting 23 life sciences companies went public during the first three months of 2014, including San Diego’s Celladon, before the markets pulled back. As Xconomy’s Alex Lash put it, “The JOBS Act has provided more space for conversation about companies with complicated stories, and biotech CEOs say those conversations have elicited valuable information.”

—A Burrill analysis of trends in the life sciences sector says IPO deals are continuing to get done, but the generalist investors who were seeking a quick return have moved on. Investors who specialize in the life sciences sector remain committed, but they have tightened their purse strings, forcing many life sciences companies to lower their expectations and offer their IPO shares at reduced prices.

—San Diego-based Otonomy raised $49 million in a new financing round that moves the six-year-old startup closer to commercializing its lineup of specialized drugs for treating diseases and disorders of the ear. The company’s lead drug candidate, OTO-201, is a formulation of the antibiotic ciprofloxacin in a gel. It is intended to … Next Page »

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

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