¿ Affymetrix Inc., of Santa Clara, Calif., and MWG-Biotech AG, of Ebersberg, Germany, entered into a license agreement granting MWG rights to certain Affymetrix intellectual property for commercializing low- and medium-density DNA arrays. MWG receives a non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-bearing license, and Affymetrix will receive undisclosed fees and royalty payments on products sold by MWG.
¿ Applied Molecular Evolution Inc., of San Diego, said it used its AMEsystem Directed Evolution technology to creative several new monoclonal antibody candidates against respiratory syncytial virus for MedImmune Inc., of Gaithersburg, Md. One of the candidates will be used to develop Numax, MedImmune's third-generation product for preventing RSV infection in high-risk populations. The antibodies evolved from the approved anti-RSV product Synagis, and have been shown to be at least 10 times more potent. The work stems from a 1999 deal between the companies under which AME would apply its technology to create next-generation products for MedImmune.
¿ Biogen Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., said James Mullen was elected president and CEO, effective Friday during the company's shareholders meeting. He succeeds James Vincent, who continues as chairman. Mullen had been president and chief operating officer since 1999. He had held various other positions since joining the company in 1989.
¿ Cellegy Pharmaceuticals Inc., of South San Francisco, said it completed the acquisition of Quay Pharmaceuticals, an Australian company. Quay's product Rectogesic (nitroglycerin ointment) to treat anal fissures has been on the market for more than a year in Australia. Cellegy expects to eventually introduce the product in the U.S. Financial details were not disclosed.
¿ Embrex Inc., of Research Triangle Park, N.C., said its board extended the share repurchase program to purchase up to an additional 6 percent of outstanding shares, or up to about 500,000 shares, over 18 months in the open market or privately negotiated transactions. The extension follows completion of an 18-month repurchase program in which the company acquired about 830,000 shares at an average price of $10.85 per share for a total cost of $9 million. The shares purchased are to be used for general corporate purposes and to fund benefit plans, or to fund future acquisitions.
¿ Genome Therapeutics Corp., of Waltham, Mass., said it entered into a contract with Schering-Plough Corp., of Madison, N.J., to provide DNA sequencing information. Genome will generate high-quality DNA sequence information in support of gene discovery projects at Schering-Plough. The companies also have ongoing research alliances to identify new treatments for asthma, fungal infections and drug-resistant organisms.
¿ Oncolytics Biotech Inc., of Calgary, Alberta, said it successfully completed its initial toxicology studies examining the effects of Reolysin in rats and dogs. Results demonstrated that there were no significant adverse clinical outcomes as a result of the administration of the reovirus at any of the dose levels tested. Previous studies showed efficacy of Reolysin against a number of different cancers.
¿ Sequenom Inc., of San Diego, said it entered into a commercial agreement with the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Diseases to screen DNA samples linked to Type II diabetes mellitus to identify the single nucleotide polymorphisms correlated with the disease and their frequency in different populations. The institute will provide individual samples of affected and control DNA, and Sequenom will use its MassArray technology and its capability to analyze SNPs in a single sample pool containing DNA from hundreds of individuals.
¿ Third Wave Technologies Inc., of Madison, Wis., and BML Inc., of Tokyo, entered into an agreement to use Third Wave's Invader operating system in BML's clinical studies in the arteriosclerosis field. BML said it believes the Invader system will become the standard for DNA analysis.
¿ Transgene, of Strasbourg, France, said it achieved a milestone in its research collaboration and licensing agreement with Schering-Plough Corp., of Madison, N.J., to develop proprietary gene therapy products and is entitled to receive a payment of $1 million. Animal studies have demonstrated that Transgene's new adenovirus vector was safer than first-generation adenovirus vectors when used to deliver Schering-Plough's p53 tumor suppressor gene, one of the most commonly mutated genes in human cancers. Results of the studies showed decreased inflammation and toxicity compared with first generation adenovirus vectors.
¿ Unigene Laboratories Inc., of Fairfield, N.J., said it entered into a joint venture with the Shijiazhuang Pharmaceutical Group Co. Ltd. in China to manufacture and distribute injectable and nasal calcitonin products to treat osteoporosis in China and possibly other Asian markets. Unigene has been granted an import license for injectable and bulk calcitonin by Chinese regulatory authorities and also has submitted a Chinese new drug application in conjunction with SPG. Upon approval of the joint venture, Unigene will own 45 percent.