Five North American biotechnology companies elected to take advantage of the current bio-bull market to sell follow-on offerings. If completed as proposed, BioCryst (BCRX), Biovail (BVF), Ilex (ILXO), ImClone (IMCL), and ViroPharma (VPHM) collectively would gobble up $488.9 million. That money would be on top of Pharmacyclic's $89.1 million follow-on that closed on Friday (see B14) and several other big money deals that closed the week prior, including $150 million worth of convertible notes sold by Affymetrix (AFFX) and a $45 million private placement by Guilford (GLFD).

PCYC's deal strength bodes well for additional biotech paper. The company, which is developing therapies for cancer, cardiovascular disease and retinal disorders, upped the deal by 550,000 shares to sell 2.3 million shares at $38.75, $11.75 above its $27 price prior to filing.

Three other high-profile deals are in registration, including Invitrogen (IVGN, 1.5 million shares, plus 3.5 million shares by selling shareholders), CV Therapeutics (CVTX, 4 million shares) and Connetics (CNCT, 4 million shares). Other big potential financings include a proposed $100 million convertible note deal by Cor (CORR), and a shelf registration by Aviron (AVIR) to sell up to $100 worth of securities.

Market hopeful

Oncolytics announced plans to raise up to C$4 million (US$2.7 million) in a Canadian IPO through Canaccord Capital. The small deal is said to be oversold. The