Troubled KaloBios axes CMO, staffers as setbacks mount up

Just weeks after KaloBios' second antibody program ended in an embarrassing failure and CEO David Pritchard quickly exited the company soon after, the biotech has now seen off its chief medical officer and more than 20% of its staff in a restructuring designed to reflect its dwindling pipeline prospects.

In a filing with the SEC, South San Francisco-based KaloBios ($KBIO) said that Nestor Molfino's job was being axed in the reorganization, which was triggered by the Phase II failure of KB001-A for Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections in cystic fibrosis patients. 

But the signs were already looking bad for the company. KB003 failed a Phase II for severe asthma last year. Sanofi ($SNY) turned its back on its ill-fated $290 million deal--which included a $35 million upfront--to partner with the biotech. Now KaloBios' interim CEO, Herb Cross, plans to concentrate on oncology.

There's no word on just how many staffers are left at KaloBios. CFO Cross was bumped up to interim CEO after Pritchard abruptly retired. Pritchard had sold the biotech's IPO with the simple statement that antibodies had become much better defined and easier to develop. But back-to-back failures in the clinic made it look like anything but easy.

The setbacks have left KaloBios a penny stock, with its stock closing at 39 cents on Monday.

KaloBios says that it expects to incur one-time termination expenses of $1.6 million to $1.8 million, which includes money provided to Pritchard.

- here's the filing

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