* Amylin Pharmaceuticals Inc., of San Diego, said it received $6 million from Johnson & Johnson, of New Brunswick, N.J., to broaden their existing collaboration on development of pramlintide, which is in Phase III trials for controlling glucose levels in diabetic patients who use insulin. Pramlintide is an analogue of the naturally occurring hormone amylin. The expanded deal gives Johnson & Johnson rights to all amylin agonists developed by Amylin Pharmaceuticals for treatment of fuel metabolism disorders, such as diabetes.

* Cel-Sci Corp., of Alexandria, Va., said it received approval from Israeli health officials to begin clinical trials of Multikine for head and neck cancer. The drug is a natural mixture of cytokines aimed at stimulating the immune system to fight the disease.

* Connective Therapeutics Inc., of Palo Alto, Calif., changed its name to Connetics Corp. The company's stock will continue trading on NASDAQ under the symbol CNTC.

* Corixa Corp., of Seattle, signed a research agreement giving Pasteur Merieux Connaught options to Corixa's protein adjuvant, leishmanial eukaryotic initiation factor, which is targeted for use with vaccines in boosting immune system responses. Pasteur Merieux Connaught is a combination of Pasteur Merieux Serums & Vaccins SA, of Lyon, France, and its subsidiaries, including Connaught Laboratories Ltd., of North York, Ontario. Pasteur Merieux is a subsidiary of Rhone-Poulenc SA, of Paris.

* Gene Logic Inc., of Columbia, Md., and Molecular Geriatrics Corp., of Vernon Hills, Ill., entered a research collaboration to discover genes associated with Alzheimer's disease. Financial terms were not disclosed.

* Immunex Corp., of Seattle, said its scientists discovered an enzyme, called CD39, that stops blood clot formation by platelets. The company will evaluate CD39 for use as an anti-blood clotting drug. The enzyme discovery was reported in the April issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

* Interferon Sciences Inc., of New Brunswick, N.J., said its board of directors approved a reverse stock split in which four shares will be converted to one share. The move will reduce the number of outstanding shares from 49.1 million to 12.27 million.

* Interneuron Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Lexington, Mass., said it will make occasional repurchases of 1.5 million shares of its stock. The company has 41.2 million shares outstanding.

* Ligand Pharmaceuticals Inc., of San Diego, began a Phase II trial of orally delivered Targretin in Europe for Type II diabetes. Targretin is a small organic compound designed to activate a subclass of retinoid receptors involved in regulating cellular activities. In Type II diabetics the drug is aimed at making patients more sensitive to insulin to better control glucose levels. A topical form of Targretin is in Phase III studies for cutaneous T cell lymphoma.

* MedImmune Inc., of Gaithersburg, Md., said results from a Phase I/II study of its monoclonal antibody, MEDI-493, for treatment of respiratory syncytial virus in infants showed the drug was safe and well-tolerated. The company said it has completed three additional Phase I/II trials and will report data from them over the next few months. Results from a Phase III trial are expected in the third quarter of 1997.

* Protein Design Labs Inc., of Mountain View, Calif., said Idec Pharmaceuticals Inc., of San Diego, paid $1 million for a non-exclusive license to Protein Design's antibody humanization patents. Idec, which is developing a monoclonal antibody targeting autoimmune diseases, also will pay royalties to Protein Design on the marketed product.

* Sugen Inc., of Redwood City, Calif., began a Phase I trial of SU5271 for psoriasis. The study is being conducted at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York and will enroll about 24 patients. The drug is a synthetic small molecule signal transduction inhibitor designed to block proliferation of keratinocytes, which are epidermal cells that make the scleroprotein keratin.

*Texas Biotechnology Corp., of Houston, said it raised $6 million in a private placement of 6,000 shares of five-percent cumulative convertible preferred stock to investment funds managed by the Palladin Group and Rose Glen Capital Group. Texas Biotechnology said the preferred shares can be converted to about 1.05 million common shares.

No Comments