¿ Cantab Pharmaceuticals plc, of Cambridge, U.K., reported results for the nine months ended Sept. 30 showing revenues of #3.1 million, less than half the #6.9 million for the same period of 1997. The company reported a loss of #4.7 million, compared to #50,00 a year earlier. The cash balance as of Sept. 30 was #32.8 million, compared to #43.2 million in September 1997. This represents an increase in expenditure, mainly due to capital spending of #3.3 million on a new research and development facility. Revenues in both years came mainly from Glaxo Well come plc, of London, under the development license for DISC HSV, a vaccine for genital herpes. Enrollment in Phase I trials of the product has been completed, and a Phase II study is expected to begin by the middle of 1999.

¿ Scotia Holdings plc, of Stirling, Scotland, said it will sell Efamol, its consumer nutritional products business, to Nutricia Holdings UK. Scotia, focused on lipid-based drugs, did not reveal how much it will raise from the sale, but said the money will be invested in its core drug development activities. Efamol, which sells products such as evening primrose oil, had revenues of #12 million for the year ended December 1997. Under terms of the sale, Nutricia, a subsidiary of Royal Numico BV, one of Europe¿s leading manufacturers of nutritional products, will acquire brand names, trademarks, stock and intellectual property, including patents and plant breeders¿ rights.

¿ Shield Diagnostics, of Dundee, Scotland, disclosed new evidence of the efficacy of its Afecta test for the measurement of Activated Factor XII (AFT) in predicting the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), which was presented at a meeting of the American Heart Association in Dallas last week. The data came from a six-year study of 2,500 middle-aged men who were free from overt cardiovascular disease. Their likelihood of developing the disease was assessed using a number of potential risk markers, including AFT. Individuals with the highest AFT levels, as measured in 1991, were much more likely than individuals with lower AFT levels to have a cardiac event in the next six years, even after correction for cholesterol levels, smoking and blood pressure. Individuals in the upper-third of AFT levels had a 70 percent greater chance of having an acute coronary event during the next six years. The Afecta test was recently approved by the FDA. David Evans, managing director of Shield, said the study ¿demonstrates that AFT is an early, independent and stable marker of cardiovascular risk, with clear indication that it is more efficacious than other single markers, such as cholesterol and fibrinogen.¿

¿ SR Pharma plc, of London, has purchased the patents and associated intellectual property rights for SRL 172, upon which its entire drug development portfolio is based, from University College London for #150,000. SRL 172 is an immunotherapeutic compound which the company is developing for a range of cancer and allergy indications. The purchase will strengthen SR¿s position in partnership negotiations, the company said.

¿ Slough, U.K.-based Xenova Group plc, which specializes in the discovery and development of small-molecule drugs derived from microorganisms, has successfully completed Phase I studies of its most advanced compound, XR5000 for the treatment of solid tumors, and is planning to start Phase II trials early in 1999. XR5000 acts as an inhibitor of the enzymes topoisomerase I and II, which are involved in the replication of DNA during cell division, and thus play a key role in the proliferation of cancer cells. The company released financial results for the nine months to Sept. 30 showing revenue of #3.9 million (US$697,700), up from #777,000 for the same period of 1997. Research and development expenditures rose to #11.9 million from #8.9 million, and there was a net loss of #10.8 million, up from #10 million. Cash levels fell to #4.8 million from #15.2 million. During the third quarter, Xenova disclosed measures to reduce cash burn and, since the end of the period, has raised #9.6 million in a rights issue.

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