• AnorMed Inc., of Vancouver, British Columbia, will receive a $3 million milestone payment from Basingstoke, UK-based Shire Pharmaceuticals Group plc, based on the recent licensing approval received in Germany by Shire to sell Fosrenol as a treatment for high phosphate levels in the blood in patients undergoing dialysis as a result of chronic kidney failure. AnorMed sold the global patent rights for Fosrenol to Shire in March 2004, and AnorMed has received $19 million upon U.S. and European approvals to date. In separate news, AnorMed reported that the Toronto Stock Exchange deferred its review of the company's shareholder rights plan, following a takeover bid of AnorMed by Cambridge, Mass.-based Genzyme Corp. AnorMed's board previously rejected the bid valued at about $380 million. (See BioWorld Today, March 24, 2004, and Aug. 31, 2006.)

• Inovio Biomedical Corp., of San Diego, established Inovio Asia Pte. Ltd. as a majority-owned Asian subsidiary in the Republic of Singapore for business and scientific development opportunities in the East Asian marketplace. The company also raised about $15.25 million in equity funding, including the sale of 2.2 million shares of Inovio Asia at $2.43 per share, for $5.35 million, and about 4.1 million shares of Inovio Biomedical at $2.43 each for about $9.9 million. Inovio focuses on developing therapies enabled by electroporation, primarily in oncology.

• Lux Biosciences Inc., of Jersey City, N.J., established Lux Biosciences GmbH in Frankfurt, Germany, as a wholly owned subsidiary with the mission to create the infrastructure for the company's European activities. Manfred Zoltobrocki will serve as managing director of operations at the Frankfurt facility.

• NovaCal Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Emeryville, Calif., signed a collaboration and license agreement with an affiliate of Fort Worth, Texas-based Alcon Inc., to research, develop and commercialize NovaCal's Aganocide compounds for infections of the eye, ear and sinus, including infections associated with persistent bacterial biofilms. Under the terms, Alcon Manufacturing Ltd. will make an up-front payment, plus ongoing payments associated with the achievement of development milestones and approval of products incorporating Aganocide compounds. Alcon also will provide research funding to NovaCal for four years, and NovaCal would be entitled to royalties on any product sales. NovaCal retains all rights to the compounds for other therapeutic indications.

• OctoPlus Technologies NV, of Leiden, the Netherlands, expects to raise up to €25 million (US$31.7 million) in an initial public offering on Euronext Amsterdam of new shares, with a price range set between €4.65 and €5.50 per share. The IPO consists of a public offering in the Netherlands and an international offering to institutional investors in certain other jurisdictions. OctoPlus is a drug delivery and development company.

• Prism Pharmaceuticals Inc., of King of Prussia, Pa., secured up to $68 million from Paul Capital Partners' Paul Royalty Fund II LP and existing investor Essex Woodlands Health Ventures Fund VI. Proceeds of $23 million were received upon the closing of the transaction, and additional funds of up to $45 million, comprised of both equity and a revenue interest financing, will be added based on the satisfaction of certain milestones. Prism named Todd David and Clarke Futch, both of Paul Capital, to its board. Prism, a specialty pharma firm, develops and commercializes acute care cardiovascular products, though it has not disclosed its product pipeline.

• Protherics plc, of London, submitted a biological license application to the FDA for Voraxaze, an adjunctive therapy for patients experiencing or at risk of toxicity from methotrexate. Trials in the U.S. and Europe demonstrated that Voraxaze reduces MTX concentration in the blood of patients in whom elimination has been delayed, thereby reducing the risk of serious toxicities and death. The product also was well tolerated, with 8 percent of 329 patients reporting adverse events that were considered related to Voraxaze. A marketing authorization application is under review in Europe, and Protherics anticipates approval there in the first half of 2007.

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