• Altea Therapeutics Corp., of Tucker, Ga., said it entered a two-year Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta to evaluate the Altea's PassPort delivery system for the delivery of influenza antigens to immune cells near the skin's surface. Scientists at the CDC and Altea will evaluate the use of the system to deliver influenza protein and gene-based antigens to induce, augment and/or broaden the overall protective immune response to influenza viruses of similar or different subtypes.

• Amarillo Biosciences Inc., of Amarillo, Texas, is developing a method to boost immune systems of livestock by adding human interferon-alpha to their feed. The company, which questioned the U.S. government's plans to protect the nation's livestock from agricultural-based terror attacks, said its plan would increase farm animals' resistance to infection by foot-and-mouth virus. Amarillo said the USDA would first look to eradicate an outbreak through depopulation, the mass slaughter and disposal of infected animals, before turning toward vaccination.

• Amylin Pharmaceuticals Inc., of San Diego, and partner Eli Lilly and Co., of Indianapolis, presented results at the 18th Congress of the International Diabetes Federation in Paris from a Phase III open-label study of exenatide. Exenatide is from a new class of therapies for the treatment of Type II diabetes known as Incretin Mimetics. Results showed that 44 percent of participants who completed 24 weeks of treatment achieved glucose level averages within the American Diabetes Association's target range. The results are consistent with the 20-week results from the same study that was presented in June at the American Diabetes Association's 63rd Scientific Sessions in New Orleans. The data also are consistent with a preliminary analysis of the first of three pivotal Phase III studies released earlier this month. (See BioWorld Today, Aug. 8, 2003.)

• Aradigm Corp., of Hayward, Calif., reported data at the 18th Congress of the International Diabetes Federation in Paris on the AERx insulin Diabetes Management System, its inhaled insulin system being developed in partnership with Novo Nordisk A/S, of Bagsvaerd, Denmark. Among three presentations scheduled during the six-day conference, a poster said the product had no short-term effect on lung function.

• DNAPrint Genomics Inc., of Sarasota, Fla., said it would serve as a subcontractor for a new National Institutes of Justice research grant. DNAPrint will use its knowledge in the measurement of population structure and genome screening to assist the institute and the grantee to map genetic markers of a certain forensics value considered by the company to be complementary to its DNAWitness efforts. The project is broken into two phases and the first phase has been approved. DNAPrint would be paid about $50,000 to produce about 80,000 genotypes. Other details were not disclosed.

• EpiTan Ltd., of Melbourne, Australia, raised gross proceeds of A$7.4 million (US$4.8 million) through a placement of 14.5 million shares at A51 cents apiece. It plans to use the funds to expand and accelerate clinical trial programs of Melanotan, its lead product. EpiTan is planning U.S. and European studies next year, as well as a genotype study in Australia, to identify skin cancer risk among Caucasians. The product is designed to reduce skin damage that results from ultraviolet light exposure.

• EraGen Biosciences Inc., of Madison, Wis., and The Blood Center of Southeastern Wisconsin Inc. formed a collaboration to collaborate on exploring methods to reduce lengthy DNA testing from weeks to as little as one day. The collaboration will focus on applications such as blood clotting and bleeding disorders. Phase one of the agreement demonstrated that EraGen's Multi-code and Gene-Code Assays offer molecular-level diagnostics. Phase two will focus on collaborative product development of new diagnostic tests.

• Genetic Technologies, of Melbourne, Australia, raised A$10 million (US$6.5 million) through a placement of about 13.3 million shares at A75 cents apiece. It plans to use the funds to expand its licensing operations in the U.S. and Europe, to build its genetic testing business in Asia, to expand research projects and to increase working capital reserves. The placement, which was managed by Emerging Growth Capital, also included 1-for-2 free unlisted attaching options with the newly issued shares that are exercisable at A$1 apiece any time before Sept. 30, 2005.

• ILEX Oncology Inc., of San Antonio, said enrollment is more than half complete in its Phase II trial of Campath (alemtuzumab) for patients with previously untreated relapsing and remitting multiple sclerosis. The company added that an independent data safety monitoring board recommended continuing the global, multicenter study, for which ILEX expects to conclude enrollment by the end of this year. The randomized, open-label study is investigating Campath and Rebif (interferon beta-1a, from Serono SA) for effectiveness in delaying the sustained accumulation of disability in patients.

• Immtech International Inc., of Vernon Hills, Ill., reported data from the pilot stage of a Phase IIa trial showing that DB289 was safe and efficacious in Thai malaria patients. More specifically, findings showed that on average, the parasite was eliminated in about 95 percent of patients in less than three days, and those patients remained parasite-free 28 days after treatment. The trial also indicated that the fever associated with malaria was eliminated within 16 hours for the same group of patients, on average. Immtech plans to evaluate the patients again in 60 days to test for any recurrence of the disease or trace of parasite. The initial study focused on the disease's Plasmodium vivax strain, a clinically less-severe strain than Plasmodium falciparum. Immtech said a second stage of the trial to treat malaria patients infected with the latter, more deadly and drug-resistant form of malaria, has begun and patient enrollment is on schedule.

• Impath Inc., of New York, was notified by the Nasdaq National Market that its stock will be delisted Wednesday. The delisting comes as a result of the company's failure to file its quarterly report for the period ended June 30. The delay arose out of the previous report of possible accounting irregularities involving the company's accounts receivable and discrepancies relating to the amounts capitalized to date on its GeneBank asset, Impath said.

• Invitrogen Corp., of Carlsbad, Calif., completed its $325 million acquisition of Molecular Probes Inc., of Eugene, Ore. August Sick, formerly Invitrogen's vice president for business development, was appointed Molecular Probes's general manager and will lead the integration. Invitrogen also reaffirmed its financial guidance for the rest of the year. (See BioWorld Today, July 3, 2003.)

The National Center for Genome Resources in Santa Fe, N.M., formed an agreement with IBM, of Somers, N.Y., to explore research and development collaborations in life sciences. The work will bring together the parties' use of bioinformatics, computing and data management with a goal of advancing genomic research. Financial terms were not disclosed.

• Orthovita Inc., of Malvern, Pa., said Nasdaq Europe approved its request to voluntarily delist its shares of common stock. Shares will continue to be traded on the Nasdaq National Market. The delisting is expected to take place at the close of business Sept. 8. Orthovita shareholders will not have to take action to transfer their shareholdings following the delisting and consolidation of trading for Orthovita's shares on the Nasdaq National Market. Orthovita is a developer of orthopedic biomaterials.

• Sequenom Inc., of San Diego, presented results from its discovery genetics program in Type II diabetes at the international Genomics of Diabetes conference in Lille, France. The presentation included data on FOXA2 (HNF3B), one of several diabetes genes the company has identified in its study. The association for eight of those genes has been reproduced in independent populations, further confirming their contribution to Type II diabetes, it said. FOXA2 is a protein thought to be involved in pancreatic development and islet cell function, but not previously known to be genetically associated with Type II diabetes. Sequenom's stock (NASDAQ:SQNM) rose 34 cents Monday, or about 12.5 percent, to close at $3.06.

South Africa's Medicines Control Council in Johannesburg, South Africa, approved the start of a Phase I trial of an AIDS vaccine candidate under study by an international research team sponsored by the nonprofit international AIDS Vaccine Initiative. The vaccine candidate, named HIVA.MVA, was designed by the University of Nairobi in Kenya and University of Oxford in the UK and is the second preventive AIDS vaccine candidate the council has approved for a Phase I trial.

• Southern Research Institute, of Birmingham, Ala., is expanding its pharmaceutical research capabilities to include proteomics. The expansion is being accomplished by adding scientific staff and equipment, as well as outside collaborations. The proteomics lab at Southern Research can measure differential protein expression using 2-D gel in both in vitro and in vivo biological systems and use mass spectrometry to identify protein drug targets and biomarkers in various biological models, it said. It also has Q-PCR capabilities.