* Medarex Inc., of Annandale, N.J., received four grants totaling$315,750 from the National Institutes of Health for development ofits bispecific antibody technology for drugs to treat cancer and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The company's bispecific antibodies bind toboth diseased cells and immune system killer cells to ensure the latterattacks the former. The grants were awarded under the NIH's SmallBusiness Innovation Research and Small Business TechnologyTransfer programs.
* ProCyte Corp., of Kirkland, Wash., agreed to pay $5.25 million tosettle a shareholder lawsuit filed in October 1994. The company paid$2.5 million in March 1996 and will pay the balance in cash ratherthan common stock.
* Protein Design Labs Inc., of Mountain View, Calif., entered acollaboration with a Japanese company, whose identity was notdisclosed, to apply Protein Design's technology to humanize a mousemonoclonal antibody for use as a potential cancer treatment. Theagreement is Protein Design's seventh with pharmaceutical firms ondevelopment of monoclonal antibodies.
* Texas Biotechnology Corp., of Houston, reported positive datafrom the first of three Phase II trials of Novastan (argatroban) withthrombolytic therapy to treat heart attacks. The study revealed thecombination of Novastan and streptokinase restored blood flowthrough blocked arteries 36 percent faster than streptokinase alone.The company said patients receiving the two drugs also experienced52 percent improvement in reperfusion. Novastan, a small moleculethrombin inhibitor, also is in Phase III trials as a heparin substitute.
* Varian Biosynergy Inc., of Palo Alto, Calif., a subsidiary of VarianAssociates Inc., also in Palo Alto, entered an agreement withStanford University Medical Center in Palo Alto and SRIInternational's Cancer Research Group in Menlo Park, Calif., forresearch into cellular responses to stress, such as low oxygen andradiation. The program is designed to develop new cancer treatments.
* Xoma Corp., of Berkeley, Calif., said interim analysis of findingsfrom a Phase II trial of Neuprex to reduce infections associated withsevere bleeding caused by traumatic injuries showed the drug wassafe and the study could continue. The analysis was based ontreatment of the first 200 patients in the 400-patient study. Neuprex isderived from the naturally occurring bactericidal permeability-increasing protein. The drug is in a Phase III trial formeningococcemia, a potentially deadly bacterial infection in children.
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