• Advanced Viral Research Corp., of Yonkers, N.Y., said the first two patients have been enrolled in its Phase II trial of AVR118, a peptide-nucleic acid complex, in advanced cancer. The study's primary objective is to explore the safety, tolerability and efficacy in patients suffering from symptoms of progressive disease, including weight loss, fatigue and loss of appetite. Patients will be measured using the Karnofsky Performance scale in their ability to perform daily tasks.

• Advancis Pharmaceutical Corp., of Germantown, Md., has enrolled 504 adult/adolescent patients in its amoxicillin Pulsys Phase III trial for the treatment of pharyngitis/tonsillitis due to Group A streptococcal infections. The company said patients will complete treatment over the next few weeks, and it expects to report top-line results around mid-June. Advancis also said it has enrolled 421 pediatric patients to date in another Phase III trial in pharyngitis/tonsillitis, and expects to report results from that study in July. If results are positive, the company could file a new drug application as early as the fourth quarter.

• Adventrx Pharmaceuticals Inc., of San Diego, said the primary endpoint for response rate was met in its Phase II trial of CoFactor with 5-fluorouracil in patients with metastatic colorectal carcinoma. The company will collect further clinical data as the remaining patients continue to undergo evaluation. Some of the data were submitted in an abstract to the 2005 American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting to be held in May in Orlando, Fla. The response rate in the Phase II trial was defined as tumor shrinkage of at least 50 percent. The company plans to launch a Phase III trial this year in the U.S.

• Aeolus Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Research Triangle Park, N.C., said interim results of its Phase I trial of AEOL 10150 showed the drug to be well tolerated when administered subcutaneously to patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. The study was designed to evaluate single doses of up to six levels in four to five patients per dose group, with one patient in each group receiving placebo. Aeolus said the interim analysis is based on findings from the first three patient groups. The company said early data indicate that patients can be dosed with AEOL 10150 at least three to 10 times above the presumed efficacious dose. A multiple-dose study is set to begin and is expected to conclude during the third quarter.

• Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., said it reached a manufacturing and supply agreement for RNAi therapeutics for its lead development programs in age-related macular degeneration and respiratory syncytial virus infection with Dowpharma, of Midland, Mich., a unit of the Dow Chemical Co. The Dowpharma contract service agreement will provide Alnylam with large quantities of GMP-certified siRNAs necessary for near-term toxicology and clinical studies. Financial terms were not disclosed.

• Amgen Inc., of Thousand Oaks, Calif., said the TREAT (Trial To Reduce Cardiovascular Events with Aranesp Therapy) study was featured in the March 2005 issue of the American Heart Journal. TREAT is the first randomized, controlled trial specifically designed to determine whether treating anemia reduces cardiovascular events in individuals with chronic kidney disease and Type II diabetes.

• Andrx Corp., of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., completed its sale and licensing of certain rights and assets to the Type II diabetes medication Fortamet and the cholesterol medication Altoprev to First Horizon Pharmaceutical Corp., of Alpharetta, Ga. Andrx received $50 million for Fortamet at the closing, and it is entitled to receive up to $35 million more for Altoprev, once it achieves certain manufacturing service levels. Andrx also is entitled to royalties on net sales of 8 percent on Fortamet and 15 percent on Altoprev.

• Applied Veterinary Genomics Inc., of Houston, said the 11th Judicial District Court of Harris County in Texas confirmed a jury's finding of multiple breaches of contract by CytoGenix Inc., also of Houston, ordering that company to provide its ssDNA vector expression in accordance with the licenses. AVGI will use the technology in research on equine lameness.

• AspenBio Inc., of Castle Rock, Colo., said it continues to make progress in development activities of its SurBred (bovine early pregnancy test) and its four recombinant drug products in development that are a part of the technology and patent estate licensed in 2004 under a deal with Washington University in St. Louis. Recent studies have confirmed that SurBred is based on the correct protein marker for determining pregnancy status of a dairy cow at the eighteenth day following artificial insemination, the company said.

• B-Bridge International Inc., of Sunnyvale, Calif., reported the closure of $4.2 million in private investment. In addition to expanding its research and development capability, the investment is expected to enable B-Bridge to develop an infrastructure that connects investigators with the latest technology and services more effectively and rapidly than current sales and distribution systems, it said.

• Cangene Corp., of Toronto, said its WinRho SDF (immune globulin intravenous) product will be marketed in the U.S. by Baxter Healthcare Corp., of Deerfield, Ill. WinRho is used to treat the critical bleeding disorder immune thrombocytopenic purpura. Baxter also markets the product in the UK and intends to launch it in 10 other European countries.

• Cephalon Inc., of Frazer, Pa., has moved its headquarters to Frazer, from West Chester, Pa. The company said the move would allow it to expand its laboratories in West Chester to accommodate additional growth of its research and development staff. Cephalon focuses on developing and marketing products for neurological and sleep disorders, cancer and pain.

• Clarient Inc., of San Juan Capistrano, Calif., and Applied Imaging Corp., of San Jose, Calif., reached a settlement that ended patent-infringement, unfair competition and misappropriation of trade secrets litigation. The companies granted each other nonexclusive, worldwide licenses allowing use of their respective brightfield and fluorescent microscopy patent portfolios for pathology applications. Also, Clarient will assume nonexclusive distribution rights to Applied Imaging's flagship Ariol pathology workstation for select applications in drug discovery and development.

• Discovery Partners International Inc., of San Diego, entered a collaboration with Oxford, UK-based Chroma Therapeutics Ltd. focused on the discovery of lead compounds against several selected targets. Under the terms of the agreement, Chroma will provide targets, and DPI will use its compound collection, discovery processes and data-management tools to identify the compounds. Financial terms were not disclosed.

• Genmab A/S, of Copenhagen, Denmark, completed enrollment in the HuMax-CD20 Phase I/II study to treat patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia. A total of 33 patients are enrolled in the study, with 27 patients included in the highest dose group.

• InKine Pharmaceutical Co. Inc., of Blue Bell, Pa., earned a $1 million milestone payment from Zeria Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., of Tokyo, its licensee in Japan for sodium phosphate tablets for use as a colonic purgative, bowel cleansing agent or laxative. The milestone was triggered by the submission of a new drug application to Japan's Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare for the licensed product. If the product is approved, InKine would receive an additional milestone payment.

• Integrated Nano-Technologies LLC, of Rochester, N.Y., was awarded a two-year, $500,000 Small Business Innovation Research grant from the National Science Foundation for further research and development of its DNA detection technology. The BioDetect platform and portable system, which integrates DNA and microelectronics, is designed to detect the presence of biological agents, such as SARS, anthrax and smallpox, in as few as 20 minutes. In other news, the company announced that a collaborative test with the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center demonstrated proof of concept for the BioDetect platform by detecting anthrax DNA.

• Metabolon Inc., of Research Triangle Park, N.C., reported its collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston on a new study to discover biomarkers for diabetic neuropathy in Type I diabetes. The study will be funded by a grant from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases in Bethesda, Md., to the hospital. Metabolon will test urine and plasma samples using its metabolomics platform that searches for signatures that predict the likelihood of developing diabetic neuropathy.

• Morphotek Inc., of Exton, Pa., said the FDA accepted its investigational new drug application for treatment of advanced ovarian cancer with MORAb-003, a humanized monoclonal antibody. The Phase I study is designed as an open-label, single-dose-escalation safety study in patients with chemo-refractive ovarian cancer. MORAb-003 has a high specificity for a number of different cancers, the company said.

• Neoprobe Corp., of Dublin, Ohio, submitted to the FDA an amendment to its investigational new drug application for Lymphoseek to include updated results from clinical and preclinical evaluations, as well as a proposal for a multicenter evaluation of Lymphoseek. The product is intended to be used in biopsy procedures for the detection of lymph nodes in a variety of tumor types such as breast, melanoma, prostate, gastric and colon cancers. Neoprobe said it anticipates filing a new drug application by mid-2006.

• ParAllele BioScience Inc., of South San Francisco, reported a collaboration agreement with the University of Iowa Cell Biology and Functional Genomics Laboratory, the UI Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences and the UI Center for Macular Degeneration, to accelerate the discovery of genes associated with age-related macular degeneration.

• Saegis Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Half Moon Bay, Calif., said a Phase I study of SGS518, which is being developed as a treatment for cognitive impairment associated with schizophrenia, showed the agent was safe and well tolerated. SGS518 is a selective antagonist of the 5-hydroxytryptamine 6 serotonin receptor.

• Scolr Pharma Inc., of Bellevue, Wash., achieved positive initial clinical results from testing its over-the-counter 12-hour pseudoephedrine tablets using its controlled-delivery technology. That was the first of three planned dosing studies in support of a planned abbreviated new drug application.

• Swiss Medica Inc., of Toronto, said results of its fourth-quarter trial comparing its pain reliever O24 to placebo in patients with fibromyalgia indicated a statistically significant improvement with O24, as measured on the Visual Analog Scale for pain. The four- to six-week pilot study indicated that more than 90 percent of the patients receiving Swiss Medica's product reported improvement on the seven-point Lanier rating scale, and nearly 54 percent reported better results using O24 vs. placebo. About 80 percent of the placebo group reported no change, and 7 percent of the placebo group reported improvement. Based upon those results, the company said it will move forward with plans to launch O24 for those who suffer from a serious form of fibromyalgia in the third quarter.

• Targacept Inc., of Winston-Salem, N.C., said it presented clinical and preclinical research results at the 7th International Conference on Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease in Sorrento, Italy. The company's three presentations were focused on ispronicline (TC-1734) and TC-1827, two of its compounds designed using its in silico drug discovery platform known as Pentad. Ispronicline is in Phase II development for conditions marked by cognitive impairment that afflict the elderly, including Alzheimer's disease and age-associated memory impairment.

• The Immune Response Corp., of Carlsbad, Calif., said that its lead HIV candidate, Remune (gp120-depleted HIV-1 immunogen), will be included in a clinical trial funded by the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md. The NIH trial is designed to study antiretroviral therapy alone vs. antiretroviral therapy with Remune in recently HIV-infected patients.

• Theravance Inc., of South San Francisco, said the FDA granted fast-track designation to telavancin for the treatment of hospital-acquired pneumonia (HAP) and complicated skin and skin-structure infections. Telavancin is being developed for HAP, including those infections due to methicillin-resistant strains of Staphylococcus aureus and multidrug-resistant strains of Streptococcus pneumoniae.

• TorreyPines Therapeutics Inc., of San Diego, said its scientists have identified compounds that lower levels of Aß42, a neurotoxic peptide associated with Alzheimer's disease, without inhibiting protein processes that are vital for normal body function. Data on compounds from Series591, which showed that oral administration lowered Aß42 levels in the plasma and brain in mouse models, were presented at the 7th International Conference on Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease in Sorrento, Italy.

• U.S. Genomics, of Woburn, Mass., unveiled its Trilogy 2020 Single Molecule Analyzer, which is composed of instrumentation, reagents and software. It is the first commercial technology to detect and quantitate individual molecules without amplification. With quantitation of single molecules, scientists can perform more accurate and thorough genetic, functional genomic and diagnostic research at the single molecular level, the company said.

• Vasogen Inc., of Toronto, said preclinical findings that demonstrate the ability of its VP015 formulation to reverse a measure of the impairment of memory and learning function associated with aging were published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. The results, based on research conducted at the Department of Physiology of Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, also showed that the effects of VP015 cross the blood-brain barrier and provide a neuroprotective effect against inflammation of the brain.

• Viventia Biotech Inc., of Toronto, reported preliminary results from an exploratory Phase I trial using direct intratumoral injection of Proxinium as a monotherapy for the treatment of patients with refractory head and neck cancer. Preliminary efficacy analysis showed that 25 percent of the 16 evaluable patients who expressed the therapeutic target for Proxinium had a complete response to therapy (complete disappearance of treated tumor).