¿ Array BioPharma Inc., of Boulder, Colo., signed an agreement with Eli Lilly and Co., of Indianapolis, to form a chemistry-based research collaboration to work on several drug discovery projects. Up to 30 Array scientists will work with Lilly's scientists.
¿ Avanir Pharmaceuticals, of San Diego, has settled litigation claims with David Katz, the company's founder, former CEO and a former director when it was called Lidak Pharmaceuticals, and his wife, Lee Katz. Avanir has conveyed to David Katz shares of Class A common stock valued at $3.9 million, and an additional cash payment of $175,000. Katz, his wife and their two daughters have, in return, assigned voting control of their stock to company management for a period of seven years, and all of Katz's outstanding stock options have been cancelled. The Katzes also have assigned all their rights to certain technology and related patent applications pertaining to research on allergy and asthma treatments.
¿ Immunicon Corp., of Huntingdon Valley, Pa., entered into a research agreement with Therakos Inc. in the field of extracorporeal photoimmune therapy. The research project will explore applications of Immunicon's magnetic separation technology with Therakos' cell therapy technology.
¿ La Jolla Diagnostics Inc., of La Jolla, Calif., will sell its MigraSpray and AllerSpray in Japan through the e-commerce site of an undisclosed U.S. manufacturer of cosmetics and over-the-counter products.
¿ Neurotrophic Bioscience Inc., of Toronto, completed a $500,000 leasing line with Transamerica Commercial Finance Corp., which allows Neurotrophic to convert existing equipment, as well as room to purchase new equipment using the line.
¿ Ortec International Inc., of New York, extended the expiration date of its Class B warrants to June 30. The warrants have a $15 exercise price and were set to expire on March 31. There are about 1.2 million Class B warrants and about 8.3 million primary common shares outstanding.
¿ Aurora Biosciences Corp., of San Diego, expanded its technology access agreement with New York-based Pfizer Inc. to include additional functionality for the Automated Master Compound store (AMCS). In addition, Pfizer exercised the option to license Aurora's GenomeScreen technology for assay development, specifically Aurora's retroviral vectors. The AMCS is a modular compound storage system designed for long-term storage of chemical samples under environmental control. Aurora and Pfizer originally signed their $50 million technology access agreement last year. (See BioWorld Today, June 16, 1999, p. 1.)
¿ Biora AB, of Malmo, Sweden, reported that Emdogain induces programmed cell death in cultured human carcinoma cells. In addition, the company has applied for patent protection for the use of enamel matrix-derived polypeptides for induction of programmed cell death.
¿ Collateral Therapeutics, of San Diego, said a placebo-controlled preclinical study found that intracoronary delivery of the human gene fibroblast growth factor-4 (FGF-4) increased heart function and reduced the size of dilated hearts in the setting of heart failure. The research, published in the Cardiac and Vascular Regeneration journal, indicates that FGF-4 gene therapy is useful in the treatment of heart failure.
¿ Consensus Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Medford, Mass., received a $99,000 Phase I Small Business Innovation Research grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for a drug discovery program to prevent the infection of cells by HIV by targeting CCR5 receptors. The program's goal is to discover a pharmaceutically active injectable peptide that will bind to CCR5 and block the ability of HIV to enter macrophages, thus paving the way for a new class of AIDS therapy known as HIV entry inhibitors, the company said.
¿ Corixa Corp., of Seattle, and Wyeth Lederle Vaccines, a business unit of American Home Products Corp., of Madison, Wisc., expanded Wyeth Lederle's access to Corixa's monophosphoryl lipid A (MPL) adjuvant. The expanded collaboration grants Wyeth Lederle Vaccines access to an oil-based formulation of Corixa's MPL adjuvant and adds several infectious disease fields, including HIV, to the original license and supply agreements. Financial terms were not disclosed.
¿ Immune Response Corp., of Carlsbad, Calif., said it made progress in identifying the gene expression patterns following anti-inflammatory treatment for spinal cord injury and the genetic basis underlying peripheral nerve regeneration. The company reported the information at the American Society of Experimental Neurotherapeutics in Washington.
¿ ICAgen Inc., of Research Triangle Park, N.C., will develop novel central nervous system therapeutics with Yamanouchi Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd, of Tokyo. ICAgen will apply its proprietary ion channel technologies within one ion channel gene family that is involved in central nervous system physiology and pathophysiology. ICAgen will receive an undisclosed up-front payment, research funding and milestones, as well as royalties on commercialized products. Ion channels are found in all cellular membranes and regulate the flow of ions such as potassium, sodium and calcium into and out of cells, thereby affecting multiple physiological processes within the body.
¿ Incara Pharmaceuticals Corp., of Research Triangle Park, N.C., received a notice of allowance for an isolated hepatocyte precursor capable of differentiating into a hepatocyte. Hepatocyte precursors, a subpopulation of cells that include liver stem cells and other liver progenitors, are capable of extensive growth and of maturing into the functioning liver tissue. The company intends to begin human trials next year of the transplantation of these cells by intravenous infusion as a treatment for patients suffering from liver failure or certain inherited metabolic diseases. After the news, Incara's stock (NASDAQ:INCR) jumped more than 100 percent, closing Monday at $7.312.
¿ Organogenesis Inc., of Canton, Mass., redeemed its outstanding Series C convertible preferred stock for $6.2 million in cash. Those shares had a mandatory conversion date of March 26, and were redeemable for either cash or common stock.
¿ PPD Discovery Inc., of Wilmington, N.C., released the First Pass, an Internet-based software application used to outline the parameters and costs along a timeline for conducting multiple preclinical development plans specific to a drug or a class of drugs. The First Pass application was developed as a management tool to enable clients to quickly outline preclinical development plans that address the scientific issues and critical factors for a potential drug or class of drugs.
¿ Triangle Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Durham, N.C., named Chris Rallis president and chief operating officer. Rallis currently is executive vice president, business development and general counsel.
¿ V.I. Technologies Inc., of Melville, N.Y., will move its corporate headquarters to Watertown, Mass., where it will be integrated into a new 35,000-square-foot research and development facility.