• Ariad Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., reported additional positive efficacy data on AP23573, an mTOR inhibitor, from further analysis of its ongoing Phase II trial in metastatic and/or unresectable bone and soft-tissue sarcomas. Sixty-one patients in the 212-patient trial who had clinical-benefit response with AP23573 - defined as tumor regression or disease stabilization - had a progression-free survival rate at six months of 70 percent, which nearly tripled that of the overall trial population of 24 percent. Median progression-free survival in that same patient subset was 36 weeks vs. 15 weeks in the overall trial population. Results are being presented at the 12th annual Connective Tissue Oncology Society meeting in Venice, Italy.

• Debiopharm Group, of Lausanne, Switzerland, said results from a Phase Ib study of cyclophilin inhibitor Debio-025 in treatment-na ve HIV/HCV co-infected patients demonstrated that the product was absorbed rapidly, with peak plasma levels reached after two hours and a terminal life of 100 hours. In 15 out of 16 subjects treated with Debio-025 during the 15-day study, HCV viral load decreased by more than 2log10, which means a decrease of more than 99 percent of the viral load. In three patients, the virus became undectectable after eight or 15 days. Data were presented at the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases meeting in Boston.

• Enzon Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Bridgewater, N.J., said the FDA completed its review of the company's investigational new drug application for recombinant human mannose-binding lectin (rhMBL) for severe infections in patients with low levels of MBL undergoing liver transplant treatment. The agency previously approved an IND for rhMBL in severe infections in multiple myeloma patients with low levels of MBL undergoing high-dose chemotherapy and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Trials in both indications are expected to begin enrolling patients later this year.

• TorreyPines Therapeutics Inc., of La Jolla, Calif., reported findings from a Phase I study of NGX426, an oral prodrug of tezampanel for acute migraine and chronic pain conditions, showing that the drug was well tolerated and that it rapidly converted to tezampanel at all doses tested. The study enrolled 30 healthy adult male volunteers, who were randomized to receive single oral doses of 10 mg, 20 mg or 30 mg of NGX426 or placebo. Tezampanel, the company's lead compound, currently is in Phase IIb testing in acute migraine.

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