* Adeza Biomedical Corp., of Sunnyvale, Calif., received a $500,000 National Institutes of Health Phase II grant to continue research to investigate the correlation between levels of Human Leukocyte Antigen-G in amniotic fluid and the outcome of pregnancy.
* CpG ImmunoPharmaceuticals Inc., of Wellesley, Mass., said it has shown the ability of CpG DNA to stimulate potent immune responses in animal models when administered as part of a mucosal vaccine. The study's results are being published in the Nov. 1 issue of the Journal of Immunology. The report showed that CpG DNA induced both systemic and mucosal immune responses against hepatitis B surface antigen in mice. The company is applying its CpG DNA technology to develop therapeutic and prophylactic products for a variety of disease indications. CpG DNA is a broadly enabling technology for immune system stimulation.
* Hemispherx Biopharma, of New York, completed its contractual arrangements with the fourth site that will begin enrolling patients in a Phase III trial of Ampligen for chronic fatigue syndrome. The protocol is for a 24-week trial in a placebo-controlled, double-blinded, multi-center randomized trial with more than 230 patients at 10 U.S. sites.
* Igen International Inc., of Gaithersburg, Md., reported that the pharmaceutical division of Abbott Laboratories, of Abbott Park, Ill., has agreed to implement Igen's Origin High Throughput Drug Discovery System. Origen provides uniform assay formats to conduct a multitude of diagnostic tests, including immunoassay, nucleic acid probe, and clinical chemistry tests. Terms were not disclosed. Abbott's is the seventh such commitment received by Igen.
* Vimrx Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Wilmington, Del., completed a Phase I/II study of VIMRxyn (synthetic hypericin) for the treatment of glioblastoma, a highly malignant form of brain tumor. Protocol is being developed for a larger Phase II multicenter study to determine more definitively the compound's efficacy. The data showed that the compound was safe, with minimal toxicity other than the well-known and manageable photo-sensitivity associated with hypericin. VIMRxyn is a pure, synthetic version of hypericin, a bioactive compound that is found naturally in extracts prepared from the Hypericum family of plants, such as St. John's wort.