A day after seeing its stock soar following the approval of its cancer vaccine Oncophage in Russia, the USA’s Antigenics is planning a private placement to raise $21 million to help finance its launch.

The stock climbed over 20% to $3.03 on the news that Antigenics has been given the green light by Russian regulators to market the kidney cancer vaccine Oncophage (vitespen). That news has now been followed by a deal to sell seven million shares priced at $3.00 each. Investors will also receive five-year warrants to purchase up to seven million additional shares at $3.75 per share.

Proceeds from the financing will be used primarily for funding “key commercial and regulatory efforts”, said Antigenics, including the launch of Oncophage in Russia and possible filings in Europe and Canada.

In an interview with PharmaTimes World News, Antigenics chief executive Garo Armen said that “the rate of change in Russia is absolutely remarkable..but we expect take-up of the product in the first six months to be slow, as we still need to secure reimbursement approval.” He added that “private-pay will be driving the first six months, and that may include some medical tourism”. After, “the public-pay market should kick in and we will see an acceleration in revenues”, Mr Armen added.