LEXINGTON, Mass., Dec. 12, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Curis, Inc. (Nasdaq:CRIS), a drug development company seeking to develop next generation targeted small molecule drug candidates for cancer treatment, today announced that it has closed the previously announced $30 million debt transaction with BioPharma Secured Debt Fund II Sub, S.àr.l ("BioPharma-II"), an investment fund managed by Pharmakon Advisors. The debt is secured with certain future royalties of Erivedge®, the first and only FDA-approved medicine for people with advanced basal cell carcinoma and is developed and marketed by Genentech, a member of the Roche Group. "We are pleased to have closed this transaction and plan to deploy this important non-dilutive capital to further advance our proprietary development programs," said Dan Passeri, President and Chief Executive Officer of Curis, Inc. "The completion of this transaction has significantly strengthened our capital position and we currently expect that we will end 2012 with approximately $56-$58 million in cash, cash equivalents and investments. We believe that this provides us with adequate capital to fund our currently planned operations into 2015. Importantly, our cash forecast does not include either potential milestones from our partners Genentech and Debiopharm or royalty revenues that we may receive in excess of quarterly payment caps under our debt arrangement, either of which could meaningfully increase our capital position if achieved." About the Debt Transaction As part of the transaction, Curis formed a wholly-owned subsidiary called Curis Royalty LLC ("Curis Royalty"), which entered into a credit agreement with BioPharma-II, whereby Curis Royalty borrowed $30 million at an annual interest rate of 12.25% (the "loan"). Under the terms of the closing of the loan transaction, Curis transferred to Curis Royalty the right to receive royalty and certain other royalty-related payments from the commercial sales of Erivedge under Curis' collaboration agreement with Genentech.