UPDATED: Pacira nets $49M in offering to fuel pain drug Exparel's launch

Pacira Pharmaceuticals ($PCRX) expects to raise $49 million from a follow-on offering completed Tuesday to help propel the commercial launch of Exparel, a non-opioid treatment for post-surgical pain incorporating the company's extended-release DepoFoam technology.

Exparel gained a crucial FDA sign-off in October to start selling the drug. The Parsippany, NJ-based company will begin its commercial launch in the first quarter of 2012, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Exparel is designed to be a long-acting pain drug. It combines bupivacaine with DepoFoam's multivesicular liposomal tech, which encapsulates the drug without altering its molecular structure and can be released into the body for up to 30 days. A single dose of Exparel at the surgical site has been shown in multiple clinical studies to last for up to 72 hours, according to Pacira. Bupivacaine injections without DepoFoam last about a 10th as long, the company notes.

The DepoFoam tech is also used in DepoCyt to treat lymphomatous meningitis and DepoDur for post-surgical pain.

Pacira announced the pricing of its public offering on Nov. 16--7 million shares of newly-issued common stock at $6.50 per share, a million shares higher than expected, according to The Wall Street Journal. After deducting offering-related expenses, the net proceeds were expected to be $42.3 million, the company said. The company said on Tuesday that its underwriters exercised an over-allotment option to buy 1.05 million additional shares at the same price, and the company now expects the stock sale to bring in net proceeds of about $49 million.

- here's the latest release
- check out The Wall Street Journal's take

Related Articles:
Pacira's FDA nod marks win for extended-release tech
Pacira's long-acting pain drug advancing

Editor's Note: This story was updated to include the amount that Pacira raised in the offering this week after its underwriters exercised their over-allotment option to buy additional shares.