Targeted Genetics cuts staff in survival effort

Seattle-based Targeted Genetics is hunkering down into survival mode as it works through an 11th-hour effort to save the company. The developer is cutting its workforce from 35 down to 10 to 15, renegotiating a lease in Bothell, WA and doing everything it can to conserve cash as it seeks out new revenue.

Targeted Genetics doesn't have a lot of cash left to conserve. In its last quarterly report, Xconomy notes, Targeted Genetics listed $3.9 million in funds as of March 31. The cost cuts will give it enough resources to limp into August. And if it can't gin some more money from licensing, partnering deals or a stock sale, the gene therapy developer says it will be forced to shut down.

An early-stage gene therapy program for Leber's Congenital Amaurosis appears to be one of the company's brightest prospects. A tiny trial on the genetic retina-damaging condition delivered good enough results to warrant publication last year. And putting its best foot forward, Targeted Genetics announced this morning that investigators at University College London are taking the next step forward in a Phase I/II dose escalation trial.

- check out the Targeted Genetics release
- read the story from Xconomy

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