argenx, a Netherlands-headquartered firm developing antibody-based therapeutics for autoimmune diseases and cancer, filed for a $74,750,000 public offering of American Depository Shares to progress its lead autoimmune diseases antibody fragment toward Phase III development and advance a second anticancer antibody candidate through mid-stage studies.

argenx is developing a pipeline of products based on its SIMPLE Antibody platform. In its Form S-1 registration document, the firm said it plans to use proceeds from the proposed public offering to complete Phase II trials with lead autoimmune diseases candidate ARGX-113 (efgartigimod) in myasthenia gravis and immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) and start preparing for a potential pivotal study in one indication. At the end of March, argenx initiated a Phase II study with ARGX-113 in the treatment of primary ITP.

argenx also aims to develop a subcutaneous formulation of ARGX-113, complete a Phase I study of the subcutaneous formulation in healthy volunteers, and explore additional indications for the drug.  A portion of the net proceeds from the public offering may also be spent licensing in, acquiring, or investing in other businesses, technologies, or assets, the firm said.

Proceeds from the PO will also be used to progress the anticancer candidate ARGX-110 (cusatuzumab) for treating hematological cancers, including completing a Phase II study in cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL), and a Phase I/II study in newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia and high-risk myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). Earlier this month, argenx reported starting a Phase II study with ARGX-110 as monotherapy in relapsed/refractory CTCL.

Combining proposed proceeds from the public offering with its existing cash and assets should be enough to support the company through at least the next year, the firm indicates. argenx reported cash, cash equivalents, and financial assets totalling €96.73 million (approximately $105.2 million) as of the end of December 2016.

argenx’ Belgian subsidiary argenx BVBA has been carrying out all argenx R&D since 2009, and in its Form S-1 registration statement, the firm said that, subject to shareholder approval, it intends to undergo a restructuring through which it will transfer all of its IP to the Belgian operation through conversion of argenx N.V. into a Dutch European limited liability company. The restructuring will be effected before the PO

Earlier this month, argenx reported earning a $10 million preclinical milestone from AbbVie through the firms’ collaboration to develop the cancer GARP-targeting immunotherapy candidate ARGX-115. Last month, argenx and Broteio Pharma reported a collaboration to develop a therapeutic antibody against a complement cascade target

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