• Apogent Technologies Inc., of Portsmouth, N.H., said it closed its sale of Applied Biotech Inc., of San Diego, to Inverness Medical Innovations Inc., of Waltham, Mass. Applied Biotech manufactures diagnostic tests for pregnancy, drugs of abuse and infectious diseases. In exchange, Apogent received $13.4 million and 692,506 shares in Inverness, which agreed to register them for resale. Apogent also received, for itself as well as its customers, a release from Inverness of any patent infringement claims of Inverness (whether or not asserted) relating to pre-closing sales of Apogent products.

• Elan Corp. plc, of Dublin, Ireland, received additional agreements from a majority of the holders of the guaranteed notes issued by its qualifying special purpose entities, Elan Pharmaceutical Investments II Ltd. and Elan Pharmaceutical Investments III Ltd. The agreements extend to Sept. 5 the EPIL II and EPIL III noteholders' waivers of compliance by Elan with certain provisions of the documents governing the EPIL II and EPIL III notes that required Elan to provide its 2002 audited consolidated financial statements by June 29. Elan did not pay a fee in connection with the waivers, which were set to expire Friday.

• Orexo AB, of Uppsala, Sweden, acquired CePeP AB, of Stockholm, Sweden, a newly formed company based on the research of Ulo Langel and his group at the department of neurochemistry at Stockholm University. The company's technology platform is based on the concept of cell-penetrating peptides. Financial terms were not disclosed.

• Paladin Labs Inc., of Montreal, said the FDA granted orphan drug designation to Fidelin (dehydroepiandrosterone/prasterone/DHEA) for adrenal insufficiency, an indication for which it has received European orphan drug designation. Paladin acquired the development and marketing rights to DHEA in 1999 through its acquisition of Neuroscience Pharma Inc., a company focused on the discovery and development of therapeutics relating to DHEA.

• Serono Inc., of Rockland, Mass., said the FDA granted full approval for Serostim (somatropin {rDNA origin} for injection), which is indicated for HIV patients with wasting or cachexia to increase lean body mass and body weight, and to improve physical endurance. Serostim originally received accelerated approval in 1996.

The Pittsburgh Development Center, which is affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh, was awarded $6.4 million by the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., to fund a program aimed at overcoming obstacles to cloning nonhuman primates. The five-year grant renews funding originally conferred in 1998 to principal investigator Gerald Schatten, director of Pittsburgh Development Center of the Magee-Womens Research Institute.

• The Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland said findings published in the Aug. 30 issue of The Lancet showed that stem cells could help cardiac tissue to repair itself weeks after a heart attack. The study identified the first stem cell homing factor for cardiac muscle tissue, which allows stem cells to home to an area of tissue damage. The body's normal reparative process is short-lived, lasting only a few days following a heart attack.

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