* Trading began in Quadrant Healthcare, of Cambridge, the first U.K. company to list on the London Stock Exchange in 1998. The placing, sponsored by Nomura International, raised £20 million before expenses. At the placing price of £1.30, the market capitalization of Quadrant, which specializes in drug stabilization and delivery, will be approximately £58 million. Commitments were received, mainly from institutional investors, for a total of 15.4 million new ordinary shares. Two collaborative partners of Quadrant, RP Scherer and Pall Corp., increased their combined shareholdings to 7.6 percent.
* Biora AB, of Malmo, Sweden, which specializes in the treatment of periodontal disease, reported net sales of US$2.1 million for the year ended December 1997, up from $579,000 in 1996. Expenses, at $13.2 million, almost tripled from $4.6 million in 1996. Biora said this increase reflected its move from development stage to a full-fledged commercial company with international marketing operations. For the year, Biora reported a net loss of $9.6 million, compared with a net loss of $4.7 million in 1996. During 1997, Biora launched its lead product, Emdogain, in 17 countries and completed an initial public offering on Nasdaq, raising $51 million.
* Synt:em SA, of Nimes, France, signed a research agreement with Laboratoires Servier, France's largest independent pharmaceutical group, to develop anticancer drugs based on Synt:em's drug delivery technology Pep:Trans. No terms were revealed. Synt:em said the Pep:Trans technology will enable it to target cancer cells, reducing side effects of chemotherapy and widening the therapeutic window.
* Elan Corp. plc, of Dublin, Ireland, completed its $375 million takeover of Sano Corp., of Miramar, Fla. Under terms of the agreement, Elan paid 0.60 American Depositary Shares for each Sano share. Sano's headquarters will remain in Florida and the company will operate as an Elan business unit. Elan said the takeover is expected to be earnings neutral for 1998. (See BioWorld International, Dec. 31, 1997, p.1.)
* Oxford GlycoSciences plc, of Abingdon, U.K., signed agreements with Oxford Molecular plc, also of Oxford, U.K., and its partner, Cambridge Combinatorial Ltd., of Cambridge, U.K., for a joint research program that initially will target design and synthesis of inhibitors of carbohydrate-processing enzymes. Oxford Molecular will design multiple combinatorial libraries, which Cambridge Combinatorial will synthesize for screening. Michael Kranda, CEO of Oxford GlycoSciences, said the deal would provide his company with a fully integrated approach to drug discovery.
* Qiagen NV, of Hilden, Germany, reported results for the year ended December 1997 showing net income up 64 percent to US$8.8 million from US$5.3 million in 1996. Turnover rose by 37 percent to US$74.3 million from US$54.2 million. The company specializes in the separation and purification of nucleic acids.