* ArQule Inc., of Medford, Mass., entered a collaboration with Ontogeny Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., for use of the former's Mapping Array technology to develop small organic compounds for testing against genetic targets with Ontogeny's OntoScreen system of biological assays. Financial terms were not disclosed.
* Corvas International Inc., of San Diego, received $3 million from Schering-Plough Corp., of Madison, N.J., as part of their 1994 collaboration to develop oral drugs from chronic cardiovascular disorders. Factor Xa inhibitors and thrombin inhibitors are two drug programs being pursued by the companies. In the past three years, Schering-Plough has paid Corvas $27 million in the alliance.
* Cytel Corp., of San Diego, began clinical registration trials of Cylexin for prevention of reperfusion injury in infants who undergo hypothermic cardiopulmonary bypass during heart surgery. The double-blind, placebo controlled trial will enroll 250 infants under 45 days old at multiple centers. Cylexin is a small molecule carbohydrate that acts as a cell adhesion inhibitor to prevent damage from inflammation that occurs after blood flow is restored to tissues at the conclusion of surgery.
* Enzo Biochem Inc., of Farmingdale, N.Y., said its subsidiary, Enzo Therapeutics Inc., began clinical trials of a gene therapy to treat AIDS. The gene therapy involves removal of patients immune and stem cells, treatment with Enzo's StealthVector to make them HIV resistant, and reinfusion to generate more HIV-resistant cells.
* Liposome Co., of Princeton, N.J., entered an agreement with American Home Products Corp., of Madison, N.J., to market Liposome's Abelcet in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. Liposome will collaborate with American Home Products' Wyeth-Ayerst International Inc. Abelcet is a lipid-based form of the antifungal drug amphotericin B and is sold in the U.S. and other countries for treatment of severe systemic fungal infections.
* NPS Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Salt Lake City, received a $2 million milestone payment from partner Kirin Brewery Co. Ltd., of Tokyo, triggered by the start of Phase II trials in Japan of a calcimimetic compound, referred to as KRN-568, for treatment of primary hyperthyroidism. Kirin has rights to KRN-568 in Japan, Korea, China and Taiwan. Amgen Inc., of Thousand Oaks, Calif., has rights elsewhere to the compound, referred to as R-568 in the U.S.
* Protein Polymer Technologies Inc., of San Diego, said Johnson & Johnson, of New Brunswick, N.J., ended their collaboration on tissue adhesives and sealants for wound healing and surgical applications. Protein Polymer was working with the Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Ethicon Inc.
* SciClone Pharmaceuticals Inc., of San Mateo, Calif., paid $1.93 million in cash and stock to buy Zadaxin, thymosin alpha 1, from Alpha 1 Biomedicals Inc., of Bethesda, Md. SciClone previously licensed rights to the hepatitis B drug, but with the acquisition will no longer pay Alpha 1 royalties. Zadaxin is on the market in China, Singapore and the Philippines. SciClone also has filed for marketing approval in 16 other countries. The company paid $130,000 in cash and $1.8 million in stock at $4.05 per share to acquire Zadaxin.
* Siga Pharmaceuticals Inc., of New York, said the National Institutes of Health, in Bethesda, Md., will begin clinical trials of the company's strep throat vaccine using a vector system that presents disease-associated antigens to the body's mucosal surfaces to stimulate an immune system response.
* VIMRX Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Wilmington, Del., and Baxter Healthcare Corp., of Deerfield, Ill., completed their previously disclosed $120 million deal to form a cell therapy company. The new VIMRX subsidiary, which will begin operations in 1998, will combine Baxter's ex vivo cell separation and storage device with VIMRX's gene therapy and genomics expertise to develop treatments for cancer and other diseases. (See BioWorld Today, June 16, 1997, p. 1, and Oct. 14, 1997, p. 1.)