* Affymetrix Inc., of Santa Clara, Calif., licensed access to its GeneChip technology to Warner-Lambert Co., of Morris Plains, N.J., for analysis of gene expression. Financial terms were not disclosed. In the agreement, Affymetrix will make custom GeneChip arrays with genes selected by Warner-Lambert to monitor their reactions to experimental drugs. Affymetrix will receive access and design fees plus payments for each chip made for use by Warner-Lambert's Parke-Davis Group.
* Corvas International Inc., of San Diego, said results of a Phase Ia trial of its anticoagulant, NAPc2, showed the drug was safe and demonstrated an anti-clotting effect. NAPc2, derived from hookworms, is an inhibitor of Factor VIIa and tissue factor, which are enzymes that trigger blood clot formation. NAP stands for nematode anticoagulant proteins. The drug candidate initially is targeted for treatment of deep vein thrombosis.
* Maxygen Inc., of Santa Clara, Calif., and Novo Nordisk A/S, of Bagsvaerd, Denmark, entered a technology licensing agreement and research and development program in the field of industrial enzymes. The companies will combine their directed evolution (DNA shuffling) technologies, with Novo Nordisk gaining an exclusive license to use the technologies to develop proteins and enzymes in designated industrial enzyme fields, while Maxygen has rights to other applications.
* Neurobiological Technologies Inc., of Richmond, Calif., began a Phase II trial of Xerecept to control swelling of the brain associated with cancer. The drug is a synthetic form of human corticotropin-releasing factor. The study is expected to enroll 90 patients with malignant brain tumors.
* Oceanix Biosciences Corp., of Hanover, Md., entered a collaboration with Amersham Life Science Ltd., of London. Financial terms were not disclosed. Oceanix's NovaScreen division, a contract research organization, will use two Amersham technologies (the scintillation proximity assay and Cytostar-T) to develop cell-based assays for drug discovery.