Corautus Genetics Inc. (AMEX: CAQ) has raised an additional $5.3 million of equity to fund an upcoming clinical trial for its cardiovascular drug.

Corautus is developing a drug known as VEGF-2 for the treatment of severe cardiovascular disease. It is set for a Phase IIb clinical trial.

Corautus sold 1.2 million shares of common stock for gross proceeds of $5,260,680 to Vertical Ventures LLC, as well as four investment funds and a private investment account managed by Ardsley Partners. The 1.2 million shares were priced at 90 percent of the average closing price of the common stock over the 20-day period prior to the execution of the contract.

Under the terms of the transaction, the investors also received warrants for 240,000 common shares, exercisable at $6.72 per share, which was 120 percent of the closing price of CAQ stock on the date prior to the closing of the transaction.

This $5.3 million in capital adds to a $2.15 million private placement executed on Jan. 12. As of Dec. 31, Corautus had $8.9 million in cash and short-term investments.

“The closing of this financing marks the achievement of a significant goal for Corautus. During the last half of 2003, obtaining additional growth capital was an important initiative,” said Richard Otto, CEO of Corautus. “With the securing of $7.4 million in new equity over the last 30 days, our $2.5 million loan from Boston Scientific Corporation and the resolution of prior liabilities, we are in a strong position to accelerate clinical trial activities and grow the company. Going forward, we will continue to set goals that put us on the path of building long term value for our shareholders.”

Otto says Corautus will continue to focus on advancing the VEGF-2 therapeutic for severe cardiovascular disease through the clinical trial process.

Corautus Genetics: