LONDON ¿ Oxford GlycoSciences plc (OGS) reported 1998 results showing the company was cash-positive in the second half 1998, after receiving a #7.5 million (US$12.1 million) up-front payment from collaborative partner Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc. However, there was an overall loss of #8.7 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 1998, up from #7.6 million in 1997.

The company, based in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, joined the London Stock Market last April, raising #30 million. It ended 1998 with #40.1 million in cash, up from #11.1 million at the end of 1997.

During the year, OGS signed collaborations worth up to US$100 million, including the deal with the seed company Pioneer, of Des Moines, Iowa, to apply OGS¿s proteomics technology to identify traits in certain seed varieties; an agreement with Incyte Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Palo Alto, Calif., to create gene-protein linked databases leading to the launch of products during 1999; an agreement with Pfizer Inc., of New York, to find disease-specific proteins as diagnostic targets in Alzheimer¿s disease; and a collaboration with diaDexus LLC, a joint venture between Incyte and London-based SmithKline Beecham plc, to find disease-specific proteins for use as clinical markers of disease progression in prostate cancer.

Research and development expenditure for 1998 increased by 58 percent to #13.2 million, from #7.1 million in 1997. Staff rose from 91 to 137.

CEO Michael Kranda said OGS made excellent scientific and financial progress during 1998. The company aims to generate near-term revenue through collaborations around its proteomics technology, and long-term value through an in-house drug discovery and development program, he said. ¿Our proteomics technology platform is already operating on an industrial scale, looking for disease specific proteins as novel targets and markers of disease,¿ he said. n