Sap for the maple leaf

The vast majority of Canadian biotech companies can't match the fund-raising power of big brother BioChem Pharma(BCHXF), which raised $159.3 million in a single follow-on offering last February. Nevertheless, like their U.S. counterparts, the smaller Canadian companies continue to raise the smaller sums necessary to keep them going.

Last week, three Canadian companies were active on the financing front, pocketing a total of US$5.8 million. Those include a $2.2 million placement by Bioniche(TSE:BNC); a $740,000 placement by Vasogen(VSOGF); and a fully exercised greenshoe by Dimethaid Research (TSE:DMX) for $2.9 million (see B11)Some see the financing activity as a direct result of investing done by the country's government and the venture capital community. "A lot of seeding that had been done by government and venture capital is starting to bear some fruit," said First Marathon analyst Cameron Groome

Two of Groome's mid-cap picks are Visible Genetics (VGINF), a developer

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