* Affymetrix Inc., of Santa Clara, Calif., signed an agreement with Metabolex Inc., of Hayward, Calif., for use of the former's GeneChip arrays to monitor gene expression in research projects. Metabolex is developing drugs for diabetes and related metabolic diseases. Affymetrix will receive undisclosed payments "based on per-data-point pricing." Other financial terms were not disclosed.
* Cel-Sci Corp., of Alexandria, Va., said it signed a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the National Cancer Institute to evaluate Cel-Sci's Ligand Epitope Antigen Presentation System (LEAPS) in animal models of prostate and mammary cancers. LEAPS combines T cell binding ligands with disease-associated peptide antigens. The company said a herpes simplex vaccine using LEAPS protected mice against herpes infection.
* Centocor Inc., of Malvern, Pa., said its negotiations for an international marketing partner for Avakine, a monoclonal antibody for Crohn's disease and rheumatoid arthritis, will not be completed before the end of 1997 as previously announced. The company said efforts to sign a distribution agreement will continue into 1998. Centocor expects to file a biologics license application for Avakine with the FDA by the end of this year and apply for European approval in early 1998. Centocor plans to market Avakine in the U.S.
* Genentech Inc., of South San Francisco, and IDEC Pharmaceuticals Corp., of San Diego, said their monoclonal antibody, Rituxan, for treatment of low-grade non-Hodgkin's lymphoma recurrences, has been shipped to medical suppliers for sale. The drug received FDA approval in late November. Genentech and IDEC have copromotion rights in the U.S. Zenyaku Kogyo Co. Ltd., of Tokyo, will sell the drug in Japan, and Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd., of Basel, Switzerland, owns marketing rights in Europe and elsewhere.
* Life Medical Sciences Inc., of Edison, N.J., terminated a European clinical trial of its topical gel, Piliel, for regrowing hair after findings revealed it "would not yield the desired benefit to the intended male users."
* Millennium Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., said it has expanded its collaboration with Pfizer Inc., of New York, and will add research personnel. The companies are working together to develop antifungal drug targets and leads. Additional resources will be focused on the application of transcript profiling and ultra-high-throughput screening technologies. Millennium's partnership began in March 1995 as a collaboration with Cambridge, Mass.-based ChemGenics Inc., with which Millennium merged in January in a stock swap valued at almost $90 million. (See BioWorld Today, Jan. 22, 1997, p. 1.)