* Aronex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of The Woodlands, Texas, filed a Marketing Authorization Application (MAA) in Spain for approval of Nyotran to treat systemic fungal infections. Nyotran is a lipid-based, intravenous formulation of nystatin, which is an approved topical antifungal drug. Aronex said the MAA was filed in collaboration with marketing partner, Grupo Ferrer Internacional SA, of Barcelona, which has rights to Nyotran in Spain and Portugal.
* Geron Corp., of Menlo Park, Calif., entered a collaboration with Boehringer Mannheim GmbH, of Mannheim, Germany, to develop diagnostics for detecting and measuring telomerase, an enzyme linked to presence and severity of cancers. Financial terms were not disclosed. Geron will receive up-front funding, milestone payments and product royalties. Boehringer Mannheim, which has been acquired by Roche Holding Ltd., of Basel, Switzerland, will receive exclusive marketing rights to the diagnostics and will be responsible for preclinical and clinical development. Roche's acquisition of Boehringer Mannheim is expected to close in 1998.
* IGEN International Inc., of Gaithersburg, Md., raised $25 million in a private placement of convertible preferred stock. The oversubscribed financing was managed by Credit Suisse First Boston, of New York.
* NeoPharm Inc., of Lake Forest, Ill., said the FDA's Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee declined to recommend the company's Neomark (broxuridine) for approval as a prognostic test for breast cancer. NeoPharm said it scheduled a meeting with the FDA in mid-January to discuss the new drug application for Neomark.
* Triangle Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Durham, N.C., said the FDA removed its "clinical hold" on DMP-450 — an HIV protease inhibitor from a class of chemical compounds called cyclic ureas — and Phase I studies will begin in January. Triangle acquired the drug candidate in its takeover of Avid Corp., of Philadelphia, in July. (See BioWorld Today, July 2, 1997, p. 1.)
* 3-Dimensional Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Exton, Pa., signed a potential $12.75 million pact with Heska Corp., of Fort Collins, Colo., to use the former's combinatorial chemistry, high-throughput screening and structure-based drug design to develop animal pharmaceuticals.
* Interferon Sciences Inc., of New Brunswick, N.J., began a Phase II trial of Alferon N Injection for treatment of patients with both AIDS and hepatitis C. Alferon, approved in the U.S. for genital warts, is described by the company as a "highly purified, natural-source, multispecies alpha interferon."
* Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., received a $3 million milestone payment from Hoechst Marion Roussel, of Frankfurt, Germany, related to development of VX-740, a drug targeted for inflammatory diseases. VX-740 inhibits the interleukin-1 beta converting enzyme, which is considered a key factor in mediation of inflammation. The milestone achieved involves progress made in preclinical development of the compound.