* Innovir Laboratories Inc., of New York, entered a collaboration with The Scripps Research Institute, of La Jolla, Calif., to evaluate in animal models a new drug candidate for chronic hepatitis B. The lead drug comes from a class of compounds developed using Innovir's site-specific External Guide Sequence technology, and will be delivered by the company's new system to facilitate entry into liver cells.
* Interferon Sciences Inc., of New Brunswick, N.J., said its low-dose oral alpha interferon, Alferon LDO, and two other low-dose alpha interferon products will be compared to placebo in a study testing the effectiveness in reducing the symptoms of AIDS. Enrollment has begun in the 560-patient study sponsored by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
* Rhone-Poulenc Rorer Inc., of Collegeville, Pa., said Rilutek was cleared for marketing as a treatment for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis in the European Union's 15 member countries.
* Scios Inc., of Mountain View, Calif., said the Opposition Division of the European Patent Office (EPO) ruled in its favor in an opposition related to Fiblast trafermin, the company's recombinant basic fibroblast growth factor. The ruling confirms an earlier EPO decision to issue a patent to Scios and rejects the opposition filed by Chiron Corp., of Emeryville, Calif., and Pharmacia S.p.A., of Sweden.
* Somatogen Inc., of Boulder, Colo., began a Phase I trial of its recombinant hemoglobin, rHb1.1, as an agent for stimulating red blood cell formation. The study will evaluate safety and hematopoietic activity in about 50 patients with anemia resulting from end stage renal disease.
* The Liposome Co., of Princeton, N.J., received marketing approval for Abelcet (amphotericin B lipid complex injection) in Sweden to treat severe, invasive fungal infections in refractory and other patients.
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