A half-million dollar investment in cancer fighter Race Oncology (ASX:RAC) from Australian biotech entrepreneur Dr Daniel Tillett has pushed shares in the company to a four-month high.

Race, which acquires abandoned cancer drugs to give them another shot at stardom, came out of a trading halt this morning to announce a $1.45m capital raise, led by Dr Tillett, who bought 8.5 million shares at 6.6c a pop — a 10 per cent premium.

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Dr Tillet has for the past two decades been the CEO of Nucleics, a private Australian biotech producing and selling DNA sequencing software to the genomics industry.

He had been examining “all public biotechs in Australia” looking for his next sound investment, and said Race had “the most upside and potential”. It is expected he will join the company’s board of directors, which tipped in a further $375,000.

Funds raised will be used to support the development of the company’s lead asset Bisantrene, a chemotherapy drug that was the subject of more than 40 clinical studies during the 1980s and 1990s before being abandoned. Race acquired it and is now taking it through the clinical pathway once again.

Late last month, Race announced the first patient had been recruited into a Phase II trial for relapsed/refractory acute myelogenous leukemia and completed their seven-day course of treatment with Bisantrene, without any major complications.

“These placement funds will provide Race with the resources needed to drive forward value-creating research and development programs on Bisantrene,” Race CEO Peter Molloy said. “We now have sufficient funding for at least the current financial year.”

Shares in Race Oncology hit as high as 8.6c in early Tuesday trade, a 32 per cent gain on Monday’s close of 6.5c, and the highest point since April.

In other ASX health news today…

Botanix (ASX:BOT) reports increased full-year loss. In no surprise for an early-stage biotech company, Botanix posted a $17m loss for the 2019 financial year, a 54 per cent increase on the prior year. That was largely thanks to increased employee and research and development expenses, as the company continues to develop its cannabidiol-based skincare treatments.

Visioneering Tech (ASX:VTI) heading in the right direction. Revenue increased and loss decreased for FY19 for the medical devices company, but shareholders sold down the stock, with shares dropping 10 per cent to 5.2c.