¿ Cell Therapeutics Inc., of Seattle, was awarded a $1.56 million grant from the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation to investigate novel approaches to early intervention and prevention of Type I diabetes. The company, in collaboration with the University of Virginia, will attempt to identify an oral agent for that indication.
¿ Chiron Corp., of Emeryville, Calif., received marketing authorization through the mutual recognition procedure to sell its subunit influenza vaccine, Agrippal, in most Western European countries. Chiron already markets three other flu vaccines in certain parts of Europe.
¿ Discovery Laboratories Inc., of Doylestown, Pa., completed a $2.45 million private placement. OrbiMed Advisors, of New York, made a $2 million investment. The unit offering consisted of common stock at market price with warrants priced at a premium. The funding will allow the company to start the next two pivotal Phase III trials of Surfaxin in neonatal indications.
¿ Icon Genetics Inc., of Princeton, N.J., signed an agreement with Biosource Technologies Inc., of Vacaville, Calif., under which Biosource will license key enabling gene-transfer technology from Icon for use in conjunction with Biosource's proprietary Geneware system.
¿ Neurocrine Biosciences Inc., of San Diego started a Phase II study of NBI-34060 for the treatment of insomnia. The randomized, controlled, multicenter trial in 228 subjects with transient insomnia will assess safety and efficacy in a sleep laboratory setting. The primary endpoint is to assess latency to persistent sleep as determined by polysomnography. The trial will enroll three treatment arms - two dose levels and placebo.
¿ OSI Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Uniondale, N.Y., signed a non-exclusive licensing agreement with Pharmacia & Upjohn, of Bridgewater, N.J., covering OSI's gene transcription patent estate. OSI will receive annual fees together with milestones and royalty payments from small-molecule gene transcription modulators turned into pharmaceutical products. Financial terms were not disclosed.
¿ ShamanBotanicals.com, the main operating division of South San Francisco-based Shaman Pharmaceuticals Inc., launched its first product, SB-Normal Stool Formula, a botanical dietary supplement product containing the patented compound, SP-303. The product is available through the company's web site.
¿ Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., said orally administered neurophilin compounds, including those that do not interact with FKBP-12, significantly improved outcomes in two different preclinical models of Parkinson's disease. Results of research on the compounds, V-10,367 and V-13,661, were presented at the International Congress of Parkinson's Disease in Vancouver, British Columbia.
¿ Titan Pharmaceuticals Inc., of South San Francisco, said the cell-based product, Spheramine, produced efficacious results in expanded studies using a validated primate model of Parkinson's disease. Results of the three-month, controlled study were presented at the International Congress of Parkinson's Disease in Vancouver, British Columbia.