¿Advanced Viral Research Corp., of Yonkers, N.Y., said its flagship product, "Product R," has a direct antiviral effect on human papilloma virus. Advanced Viral Research is developing Product R as a broad-spectrum, non-toxic anti-viral drug.
¿Antex Biologics Inc., of Gaithersburg, Md., completed enrollment in a dosage and formulation clinical trial of Helivax, an orally administered vaccine intended to prevent and eradicate infections by Helicobacter pylori. Vaccination has begun in volunteers, and results from the trial are expected by the first quarter of 2001. Clinical results of a Phase I trial confirmed preclinical findings that the vaccine is well tolerated and stimulates immune responses. Helivax is produced using the company's nutriment signal transduction technology.
¿Array BioPharma Inc., of Boulder, Colo., has expanded an existing collaboration with Merck & Co. Inc., of Whitehouse Station, N.J., to design and synthesize lead generation libraries for drug discovery at Merck. The companies will collaborate to design small-molecule libraries exclusively for Merck's drug discovery activities. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
¿Atrix Laboratories Inc., of Fort Collins, Colo., has established a separate dermatology business unit.
¿Aurora Biosciences Corp., of San Diego, has entered an alliance with the non-profit Hereditary Disease Foundation to discover new therapies for Huntington's disease. Aurora will use its green fluorescent protein technology and beta-lactamase reporter technology to develop cell-based and biochemical screening assays and will conduct ultra-high-throughput drug screening. Aurora is seeking to identify compounds that can modify the structure or the function of the protein involved in Huntington's disease.
¿Axonyx Inc., of New York, gave results from a multiple-dose Phase I human safety trial for Phenserine, the company's lead drug for Alzheimer's disease. This study followed the successful single-dose Phase I trial and identified a therapeutic range for the oral administration of multiple doses of the drug. The trial also showed patient safety and a significant inhibition of red blood cell acetylocholinesterse, an enzyme associated with improvement of memory and cognition in Alzheimer's patients.
¿BioTime Inc., of Berkeley, Calif., said it will present data from animal experiments involving the complete replacement of circulating blood with Hextend, and the potential medical implications of the data, at the upcoming meeting of the American Society of Extra-Corporeal Technology. In one set of experiments, replacing the blood at near-freezing temperatures allowed recovery even after extended periods of cardiac and circulatory arrest in a variety of animals.
¿Cell Genesys Inc., of Foster City, Calif., released an encouraging follow-up report on an initial clinical trial of the GVAX lung cancer vaccine. The trial was conducted in patients with advanced non-small-cell lung cancer, the majority of whom have failed prior treatment with surgery, radiation and/or chemotherapy. Eighteen of 25 patients who received the complete course of vaccinations demonstrated enhanced antitumor immunity as measured by delayed-type hypersensitivity skin reactions. In addition, two patients continue to experience disease-free survival for more than two years after treatment, and three other patients were reported to have stable disease without evidence of tumor progression after 15, eight and four months, respectively. Treatment with GVAX was safe and well tolerated in the outpatient setting.
¿Chromos Molecular Systems Inc., of Burnaby, British Columbia, and the Biological Research Center of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Szeged, Hungary, published a paper in the Aug. 22, 2000, issue of the Journal of Cell Science entitled "Novel Generation of Human Satellite DNA-based Artificial Chromosomes in Mammalian Cells." A team of scientists generated artificial human chromosomes that could be used as low-risk vectors for gene therapy.
¿Collateral Therapeutics Inc., of San Diego, said it reached an agreement with the University of Texas (UT) to exclusively license certain human genes discovered by UT researchers and to sponsor additional gene discovery research focused on cardiac cell differentiation. Under the agreement, Collateral will commercialize the research and will have exclusive worldwide rights to the genes for use in gene therapies for the treatment of heart disease.
¿Cyberonics Inc., of Houston, said its board of directors rejected a proposal from Medtronic Inc., of Minneapolis, to acquire Cyberonics for $26 a share in Medtronic stock. Cyberonics said the board voted unanimously to remain independent to pursue opportunities in the fields of depression, in Alzheimer's Disease and obesity.
¿Encap Inc., of Danvers, Mass., said it is developing a bioactive compound isolated from berries of P. dodecandra that can be used as a mosquito larvicide. Encap plans to develop the product for both foreign and U.S. markets as a low-cost, environmentally friendly product. Encap is a phytochemical-based company with compounds in the fields of pharmacy, agriculture and aquatic sciences.
¿Epimmune Inc., of San Diego, said Deborah Schueren, president and CEO of Epimmune, will step down once a new CEO is appointed. Schueren stated a desire to spend more time with her family as the cause of her resignation.
¿Genome Informatics Corp., of Oak Ridge, Tenn., also called Genomix, released the first version of its reference catalogue of human genes as part of the new GenePOOL data resource. GenePOOL combines the human reference gene set with gene catalogues of 30 other microbial and model organisms to provide a summary of information related to each gene. Genomix provides analysis system software for pharmaceutical, agriculture and biotechnology research and development teams.
¿Genometrix Inc., of The Woodlands, Texas, said it has introduced two VistaExpress microarray products for its gene expression analysis services. The pre-fabricated VistaExpress arrays, the apoptosis and cell cycle regulator array and the growth factor/cytokine array focus on genes that control specific cell activities. Genometrix provides cost-effective, high-throughput genomic services and information.
¿Immtech International Inc., of Vernon Hills, Ill., received a Small Business Innovation Research Phase II grant from the National Institutes of Health for the development of a novel prodrug treatment for opportunistic infections. The grant for $776,000 was given to the company and its university research collaborators at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Georgia State University in Atlanta to complete the preclinical development and manufacturing scale-up of its lead prodrug, DB 289. The oral drug is being developed to treat Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia, a specialized fungus that attacks the lungs and can be fatal in immune-compromised patients.
¿InforMax Inc., of Rockville, Md., and Structural Bioinformatics Inc., of San Diego, said Structural's proprietary database content of atomic resolution 3-D protein models will be offered to GenoMax customers under the SBD brand name.
¿Interneuron Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Lexington, Mass., said it will receive a $3 million milestone payment from Pfizer Inc., of New York, based on the recent initiation of clinical trials designed to establish that pagoclone is safe and efficacious for use in panic disorder. This payment stems from the 1999 agreement between the companies and is the first major milestone of the collaboration.
¿Labopharm Inc., of Laval, Quebec, said it signed a second agreement with a company within the Aventis group to develop new formulations of a major product. Aventis will transfer the needed active ingredient to Labopharm, but the drug was not named for competitive reasons. Labopharm is a research and development pharmaceutical company focusing on the development of products that use the company's proprietary, controlled-release technology.
¿Lion Bioscience AG, of Heidelberg, Germany, and Electric Genetics, of South Africa, entered an agreement to incorporate Electric Genetics' stackPACK clustering and analysis tool into Lion Bioscience's SRS data integration platform. StackPACK enables the rapid clustering of high volumes of expressed sequence tags and partial length sequences into maximal length transcripts. Electric Genetics develops software products and services to help researchers understand genomic information. Lion Bioscience focuses on research and development data analysis and information management systems and solutions for the life sciences.
¿Medicure Inc., of Winnipeg, Canada, filed an Investigational New Drug application with Canada's Therapeutic Products Directorate for Cardoxal, an oral therapeutic in development for treatment of myocardial infarction and ischemia reperfusion injury. The company is preparing for a Phase I human clinical study in healthy volunteers. The trial will begin upon regulatory acceptance of the IND.
¿Neurochem Inc., of Saint Laurent, Quebec, submitted an Investigational New Drug application to the FDA for Fibrillex, an orally active anti-amyloid agent for patients suffering from secondary amyloidosis. The product has successfully completed four Phase I safety trials.
¿Neurotrophic Bioscience Inc., of Toronto, raised C$6 million (US$4.05 million) in a second round of fincancing with the company's existing investors: Business Development Bank of Canada, GeneChem Technologies Venture Fund L.P. and Sofinov, a subsidiary of the Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec. The company also signed a new bioinformatics outsourcing agreement with The Hospital for Sick Children's Bioinformatics Group.
¿Proteome Inc., of Beverly, Mass., said it launched the first human databases coupling protein functional information to the human genome. The databases, the Human Proteome Survey Database and the G Protein-Coupled Receptor Database, build on Proteome's BioKnowledge Library. Proteome is privately held and compiles, distills and transforms protein information into meaningful knowledge.
¿Ribozyme Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Boulder, Colo., and Eli Lilly and Co., of Indianapolis, completed a study of LY466700, an anti-hepatitis C ribozyme compound discovered by RPI. The trial was constructed to examine safety and bioavailability in patients during a 28-day dosing regimen, not to test efficacy.
¿The Althexis Company Inc., of Waltham, Mass., reported that its thermochemical-based screening technology, which uses microcalorimetric methods, is able to increase the speed and success rate of discovery among protein targets of unknown function. Althexis reported proof-of-concept data at the annual meeting of the Society for Biomolecular Screening in Vancouver, British Columbia.
¿The Medicines Company, of Cambridge, Mass., said underwriters of its recent initial public offering of 6 million shares exercised their option to purchase 900,000 shares of common stock at $16.00 per share. Total net proceeds to the company were $101.4 million before underwriting discounts and expenses. The underwriters were J.P. Morgan & Co., Robertson Stephens and CIBC World Markets.
¿Triangle Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Durham, N.C., said researchers from Agence Nationale de Recherche sur le SIDA in France presented one-year results from a pilot study of a once-daily combining Triangle's Coviracil (emtricitabine), didanosine and efavirenz as a first-line therapy in treatment-naove HIV patients. The results were presented at the 38th Annual Meeting of the Infectious Disease Society of America in New Orleans.