¿ 3-Dimensional Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Exton, Pa., said it selected Lower Makefield in Bucks County, Pa., as the site for its new centralized corporate headquarters. It has leased 20,500 square feet of office space for senior management and all corporate functions. The company has two current research facilities that it will continue to maintain.
¿ Cryo-Cell International Inc., of Clearwater, Fla., said the merger between its subsidiary, CCEL Bio-Therapies, and Saneron Therapeutics Inc. has been completed. Cryo-Cell will own about 43 percent of the merged company, Saneron CCEL Therapeutics Inc. World marketing rights granted through licenses issued to Saneron and CCEL Bio-Therapies have been assigned to the newly merged company. Separately, Cryo-Cell reported publication of University of South Florida research team findings in Experimental Neurology. As part of a study, the company provided fractionated cryopreserved stem cells to researchers, who used retinoic acid and growth factors to differentiate the cord blood cells into neural cells. Results showed the potential usefulness of the cells to treat neurodegenerative diseases.
¿ Enzo Biochem Inc., of New York, reported preliminary results from its Phase II trial of EHT899 to treat patients with chronic active hepatitis associated with hepatitis B. The data indicate that the 42 individuals treated with the oral immune regulation therapy showed improvement in key areas of liver inflammation. Nearly 75 percent of HBV-infected subjects experienced improvement in one or more key endpoint parameters, including biopsy results, HBV viral load, liver enzymes and histology. Decreases in HBV viral load and improvement in liver function tests were observed in 42 percent of patients, who were treated with EHT899 three times a week for 20 to 30 weeks and followed for an additional 20 weeks.
¿ Genta Inc., of Berkeley Heights, N.J., reported publication in the current issue of The Journal of Molecular Medicine of preclinical data that showed its lead antisense compound, Genasense, increased the anticancer activity of cisplatin, marketed as Platinol by Bristol Myers Squibb Co., of New York, in a stomach cancer model. While Genasense and cisplatin used alone both showed a moderate increase in antitumor activity compared to controls, combined therapy revealed a 70 percent greater antitumor effect than with cisplatin alone. Also, survival was increased by more than 50 percent with no increase in side effects.
¿ Genteon Inc., of San Diego, introduced its first product, the Capella 400, a high-throughput 384 capillary electrophoresis system for DNA polymorphism analysis. Genteon also has developed a proprietary chemistry for single nucleotide polymorphism genotyping that it said completely eliminates the use of fluorescent dyes.
¿ GlycoDesign Inc., of Toronto, and Leo Pharmaceutical Products Ltd., of Ballerup, Denmark, jointly selected a drug candidate, GH9001, to begin Phase I trials in December. GH9001 incorporates the mechanisms of action of traditional glycosaminoglycans with those of direct thrombin inhibitors. Also, the companies agreed to complete preclinical toxicology studies on a second antithrombotic compound, GD4040.
¿ Graffinity Pharmaceuticals Design GmbH, of Heidelberg, Germany, delivered the first results in its chemical microarray collaboration entered in May with Aventis Pharma SA, of Strasbourg, France. Under the collaboration, Graffinity was to synthesize exclusive arrays for Aventis to discover novel lead structures for a major target class.
¿ Guilford Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Baltimore, was told by the FDA that its review with the Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee will take place Dec. 4 on its supplemental new drug application for Gliadel Wafer (polifeprosan 20 with carmustine implant). The review originally scheduled for Sept. 11 was postponed.
¿ Siga Technologies Inc., of New York, received $2 million from a private placement of 666,666 shares of common stock and warrants to purchase 333,333 shares of common stock. The common stock was placed at a fixed price of $3 per share and yielded net proceeds of about $1.8 million. The warrants are exercisable at $3.60 per share, a premium to the closing price of the common stock at the time the transaction was completed. The shares and warrants were placed by the Shemano Group in San Francisco. Siga is identifying and developing novel anti-infective agents based on its research in the field of bacterial surface proteins.
¿ The National Organization for Rare Disorders, of New Fairfield, Conn., awarded its first Roscoe Brady Lysosomal Storage Disease Fellowships, totaling $337,680, to five physician researchers from the U.S., Japan and Brazil. They will explore the causes of Fabry, Krabbe, Hunters, Gaucher and Tay-Sachs diseases.
¿ Transgenomic Inc., of San Diego, introduced new operating software for its flagship product, the Wave system for genetic analysis, and a bioinformatics portal. The Navigator software is designed to improve genetic lab productivity through distributed computing capabilities, new algorithms designed to detect genetic variations or mutations and integration to its bioinformatics portal.
¿ ViroLogic Inc., of South San Francisco, said that 44 out of 50 U.S. state Medicaid programs now have coverage policies enabling reimbursement of its PhenoSense and GeneSeq HIV drug-resistance assays. At least one more state is expected to initiate coverage in the new fiscal year, and the remaining states are considering coverage policies, it said.