¿Aventis Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Parsippany, N.J., received approval from the FDA to market Lantus (insulin glargine [rDNA origin] injection) for the treatment of Type II and Type I diabetes. The product will be available later this year. Lantus is indicated for once-daily subcutaneous administration at bedtime in the treatment of adult patients with Type II diabetes mellitus who require basal insulin for the control of hyperglycemia, and for adult and pediatric patients with Type I diabetes mellitus.

¿ Discovery Therapeutics Inc., of Richmond, Va., started a Phase II trial with DTI-0009 in patients with cardiac arrhythmias characterized by chaotic or abnormally rapid heartbeats. The trial will evaluate DTI-0009, a new- generation adenosine-based drug, for its ability to restore normal heart rhythm in patients with atrial fibrillation, the most common of all cardiac arrhythmias. Patients will be studied to determine the intravenous dose of DIT-009 required to normalize their heart rate and to convert the atrial fibrillation to normal cardiac rhythm.

¿ Exelixis Inc., of South San Francisco, said two more of its novel drug targets were accepted by Pharmacia Corp., of Bridgewater, N.J., The event triggered undisclosed milestone payments. Under the terms of the agreement Exelixis will identify novel drug targets in the fields of Alzheimer's disease and metabolic syndrome in exchange for ongoing research support, milestone payments and royalties.

¿ Lorus Therapeutics Inc., of Toronto, filed a final short-form prospectus stating it sold 13.3 million shares for C$3 each for gross proceeds of $C40 million (US$27.1 million). The underwriters have an option to purchase another 2 million shares. (See BioWorld Today, April 13, 2o00, p. 1.)

¿ NPS Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Salt Lake City, closed its private placement by selling 3.9 million shares of common stock at $12 each, netting $43.5 million. The company now has about 24.1 million shares outstanding and $75 million in cash. The proceeds will be used to advance clinical development programs for ALX1-11 and ALX-0600, as well as for other corporate purposes. ALX1-11, now in Phase III trials, is a recombinant human parathyroid hormone product for the treatment of osteoporosis. ALX-0600 is an analogue of a growth factor found in the digestive system that is being developed for the treatment of gastrointestinal diseases. It is in Phase II trials for short bowel syndrome. (See BioWorld Today, Feb. 8, 2000, p. 1.)

¿ PharmaKinetics Laboratories Inc., of Baltimore, reported the settlement of a civil action brought by Altana Inc., of Melville, N.Y in December 1999 relating to the performance of certain clinical studies that the suit alleges were not performed to Altana's satisfaction. The settlement calls for Altana to receive a class of convertible preferred stock and warrants to purchase common stock. Altana can elect to exchange shares to the preferred stock for future studies performed by PharmaKinetics. PharmaKinetics Laboratories is a contract research organization serving the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries.

¿ Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp., of East Hanover, N.J., received approval from the FDA to market Exelon (rivastigmine tartrate) capsules, a cholinesterase inhibitor for the treatment of mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease. In Phase III tests, the drug proved effective in global functions and cognition.