¿ Advanced Viral Research Corp., of Yonkers, N.Y., raised $2 million in a private placement with Focus Investors LLC, an investment fund managed by WEC Asset Management LLC, of New York. The placement is in the form of a $2 million 10-year 7 percent convertible debenture. Focus also has been granted 1 million warrants to purchase additional shares at about 25 cents per share. The company is developing immunomodulator drugs for a number of indications.
¿ Affymetrix Inc., of Santa Clara, Calif., said Glaxo Wellcome plc, of London, elected to convert its shares of Series AA preferred stock into 1.26 million shares of Affymetrix common stock. As a result of the conversion and Glaxo's recent sale of 1 million shares of common stock, Glaxo now owns 30 percent of Affymetrix. Glaxo last year purchased $50 million of series A preferred stock convertible into Affymetrix common stock at $40 per share. (See BioWorld Today, March 11, 1998, p. 1.)
¿ Argonex Inc., of Charlottesville, Va., started a $2.5 million company in Dundee, Scotland. The new business, Argonex Discovery, will employ 15 people and manufacture products used in high-throughput screening research into cancer, infections and autoimmune diseases.
¿ Array BioPharma Inc., of Boulder, Colo., will provide Tularik Inc., of South San Francisco, access to small-molecule libraries for screening against Tularik's high- throughput screening assays. Tularik is seeking drugs that control gene expression. Financial terms were not disclosed.
¿ Celgene Corp., of Warren, N.J., said a randomized, placebo-controlled Phase II trial was initiated by the Intramural Division of Clinical Sciences at the National Cancer Institute to administer Thalomid (thalidomide) or placebo to 94 patients following surgical resection of metastases from colon and rectal carcinoma. The Thalomid study group will be treated for 24 months to measure disease-free survival rates.
¿ Cytogen Corp., of Princeton, N.J., completed a $5 million offering of common stock to the State of Wisconsin Investment Board. The company sold 3.1 million shares at $1.61 per share, equal to a 7.25 percent discount to the average price of the shares over a five-day pricing period. Cytogen will not draw on the remaining $11.5 million of an October 1998 equity line, and it plans to take steps to deregister shares related to that credit line.
¿ Human Genome Sciences Inc., of Rockville, Md., and scientists at UCLA discovered two human proteins that inhibit the formation of new blood vessels and may have application in a range of tumor types. The two proteins, METH-1 and METH-2, were shown to be more active than thrombospondin and endostatin in preventing blood vessel formulation in a cornea pocket model. The discovery is described in the Aug. 13, 1999, issue of Journal of Biological Chemistry.
¿ IDEC Pharmaceuticals Corp., of San Diego, entered into a clinical trials agreement with the Division of Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis (DCTD) of the National Cancer Institute to study Zevalin, formerly called IDEC-Y2B8. Studies of the yttrium-based immunotherapy will focus on hematologic malignancies, such as intermediate and high-grade non-Hodgkin's leukemia, as well as patients with extensive bone marrow involvement and possibly in combination with chemotherapy.
¿ Incara Pharmaceuticals Corp., of Research Triangle Park, N.C., said BASF Pharma/Knoll AG, of Ludwigshafen, Germany, terminated their Bextra (bucindolol) collaboration. Last week the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Veterans Affairs ended a Phase III study in heart failure patients because of a lack of statistically significant survival benefit. The collaboration was for development in countries outside the U.S. and Japan. (See BioWorld Today, July 30, 1999, p. 1.)
¿ Neurobiological Technologies Inc., of Richmond, Calif., said its corporate partner, Merz + GmbH & Co., of Frankfurt, Germany, will lend it up to $1.5 million to support continuing late-stage clinical development of Memantine, an NMDA receptor antagonist that is in Phase IIb trials for neuropathic pain in diabetes.
¿ Ophidian Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Madison, Wis., approved a 1-for-8 reverse stock split. Sept. 20 is the effective date.