Marina Biotech reduces board size, seeks funding
Marina Biotech, a nucleic acid-based drug discovery and development company, continues to seek adequate funding to implement its business plan.
To align the size of its board of directors with its strategic objectives, the company has reduced the size of its board to three members. The board will now consist of J. Michael French, Stefan Loren, Ph.D., and Joseph W. Ramelli. The board unanimously appointed Loren and Ramelli to the board Aug. 20 to fill the vacancies created by the resignations of Peter D. Parker and Gregory Sessler. Following the appointments, on Aug. 21 James M. Karis, R. John Fletcher and Michael D. Taylor, Ph.D., also resigned from the board. French will become chairman of the board.
To generate revenue, reduce debt and conserve cash, Marina Biotech has:
- Entered into a licensing agreement with Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research for Marina's Conformationally Restricted Nucleotide (CRN) technology for the development of both single- and double-stranded oligonucleotide therapeutics. The Company received $1 million in upfront fees for the non-exclusive license.
- Negotiated an amendment and extension on the company's secured loan such that if the company effects a merger or consolidation that results in a change-of-control before Dec. 31, 2012, any unpaid principal and interest will convert to common stock, thus eliminating the company's cash obligation to its secured lender.
- Negotiated with certain unsecured creditors to reduce its cash obligations through the issuance of shares of common stock.
"We continue to work hard to realize the true value of the nucleic acid platform we've created over the past years," said French, president and CEO.
Marina continues to identify strategic opportunities and seek additional funding. If sufficient additional funds are not received in the near term, the company said it may need to further reduce or cease operations completely.