Net proceeds from the financing will be used to fund development of the company's monoclonal antibody portfolio and for general corporate purposes, including the pivotal Phase III trial of lenzilumab for the prevention and treatment of cytokine storm in COVID-19 pneumonia and the development of Humanigen's pipeline, including ZUMA-19, the CAR-T study involving lenzilumab being conducted in collaboration with Kite Pharma/Gilead Sciences.
Dr. Cameron Durrant, chief executive officer of Humanigen, stated, "We are pleased to announce this financing that incorporates some of the most respected and knowledgeable specialized healthcare investors in the world. We appreciate our new investors' validation of Humanigen's approach to GM-CSF pathway science and its potential impact in COVID-19 patients, as well as other conditions with high unmet medical need. With the support of our existing and new investors, we are also planning to list our common stock on a national securities exchange in the coming months."
[What a sweet irony it would work, should all of this play out in the favor of those investors burned by Martin, since long ago he was required to divest all his holdings in what became Humanigen. But back to the story, proper, then:]
One of the programs Dr. Durrant has pursued since the company was freed of Martin via a bankruptcy reorganization, involved… Lenzilumab.
Here is a bit from the top of page 78 of the just filed Humanigen SEC Form 10-K, related to the at least animal model studies of Lenzilumab:
“…Recent data from China and the subject of a pre-publication titled “Aberrant pathogenic GM-CSF+ T cells and inflammatory CD14+CD16+ monocytes in severe pulmonary syndrome patients of a new coronavirus”, supports the hypothesis that cytokine storm-induced immune mechanisms have contributed to patient mortality with the current pandemic strain of coronavirus.
The severe clinical features associated with some COVID-19 infections result from an inflammation-induced lung injury requiring Intensive Care Unit (ICU) care and mechanical ventilation. This lung injury is a result of a cytokine storm resulting from a hyper-reactive immune response. The lung injury that leads to death is not directly related to the virus, but appears to be a result of a hyper-reactive immune response to the virus triggering a cytokine storm that can continue even after viral titers begin to fall.