¿ Aronex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of The Woodlands, Texas, renegotiated to convert a $2.5 million payment due to Genzyme Corp., of Cambridge, Mass., into a three-year convertible note bearing 10 percent interest per year. The obligation was triggered in March when Aronex regained worldwide rights to Atragen, an injectable formulation of all-trans-retinoic acid.
¿ Cephalon Inc., of West Chester, Pa., said modafinil now is available in Australia for treating narcolepsy. Cephalon is promoting the drug there under the name Modasomil. It is sold in the U.S., U.K. and Ireland under the name Provigil.
¿ CoCensys Inc., of Irvine, Calif., said partner Parke-Davis, a division of Morris Plains, N.J.-based Warner-Lambert Co., advanced its lead compound into preclinical development for treatment of neurological disorders. The compound is an antagonist of NMDA receptors. The first-generation NMDA receptor antagonists, which were not selective, produced unacceptable side effects.
¿ CytRx Corp., of Atlanta, received the second and final installment of a $400,000 grant to support its ongoing study of Flocor for the treatment of sickle-cell vasco-occlusive crisis. The grant was from the FDA's Division of Orphan Drug Product Development. Flocor is in Phase III trials.
¿ Hughes Institute, of St. Paul., Minn., reported its scientists found genistein, a steroid-like substance found in soybeans, may be effective as a treatment for conditions such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and stroke. The work was published this month in the journal Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications.
¿ Lynx Therapeutics Inc., of Hayward, Calif., and Oxagen Ltd., of Oxford, U.K., agreed to collaborate on a program to discover and validate disease-associated single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). The program initially will focus on inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) but could be expanded later to other disorders. Terms were not disclosed. Lynx will apply its technologies to identify disease-associated SNPs from large IBD patient populations available to Oxagen, which will map and further refine the regions of association.
¿ Maxim Pharmaceuticals Inc., of San Diego, completed its first two marketing alliances for Maxamine, which is being developed for cancer and other indications. F.H. Faulding & Co. Ltd., of Underdale, Australia, gained rights in Australia and New Zealand. MegaPharma Ltd., of Hod-Hasharon, Israel, got rights in Israel. Maxim said it will get at least 40 percent of sales in those territories.
¿ Neomorphic Software Inc., of Berkeley, Calif., entered into a collaboration with SyStemix Inc., a Palo-Alto, Calif.-based unit of Novartis AG, to apply its Markov model-based analytic technology to find genes in SyStemix's gene sequence databases that are unable to be classified using existing tools. Terms were not disclosed.