* Houghten Pharmaceuticals Inc., (HPI) of San Diego, has completed the sale of its subsidiary, Multiple Peptide Systems, which sells products to the research community. HPI will receive $1.5 million in 1997 in three incremental payments, totaling $750,000, to be paid on the third, fourth and fifth anniversaries of the transaction.
* Lark Technologies Inc., of Houston, reports the initiation of mutation detection studies in its senescence gene research program, which will move to a new phase with direct testing of tumor-derived cell lines to identify potential mutations in its candidate senescence gene linked to cellular aging and cancer. Also Lark is verifying the identity and relevance of a second candidate senescence gene located on a different human chromosome from the previously announced Group B gene candidate.
* NeoTherapeutics Inc., of Irvine, Calif., reports an investigational new drug application has been cleared by the Canadian Ministry of Health to begin testing the company's lead compound, AIT-082, in humans. AIT-082 is a novel small molecule designed to cross the blood-brain barrier and enhance nerve cell function by increasing levels of neurotrophic factors in damaged or degenerating neural pathways.