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Helicos' Q4 Net Loss Rises on Increased Spending

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Helicos BioSciences' fourth-quarter net loss climbed nearly 50 percent as the firm geared up for the commercial launch of its Helicos Genetic Analysis Platform.

The Cambridge, Mass.-based firm reported that it had grant revenue of $117,000 in the quarter, compared to $159,000 in the fourth quarter of 2006.

Though Helicos had no commercial revenues for the three-month period ending Dec. 31, 2007, it recently announced that it had taken the first order for its next-generation sequencing platform, and last week disclosed that that first customer is genomic services provider Expression Analysis.

Helicos’ R&D expenses climbed 44.7 percent year over year to $6.8 million from $4.7 million, while its general and administrative costs rose 68 percent to $4.1 million from $2.5 million.

The company’s net loss for the quarter was $10.4 million, or $.50 per share, compared to a net loss of $7 million, or $4.91 per share, in the fourth quarter of 2006.

For full-year 2007, Helicos reported grant revenue of $582,000 versus 2006 grant revenue of $159,000. The firm’s R&D expenses jumped to $24.8 million from $14.4 million, and its general and administrative costs more than doubled to $14.3 million from $6.9 million.

Helicos’ net loss for the year was $54.9 million, or $4.23 per share, up from a net loss of  $20.6 million, or $16.35 per share.

The 2007 net loss includes a non-cash charge of $18,140,000 for the conversion of convertible preferred stock, which was issued in January 2007, to common stock in May 2007 when Helicos completed its initial public offering.

Helicos finished 2007 with $52.7 million in cash, cash equivalents, and short-term investments.

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