* Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc., of New Haven, Conn., began a PhaseI trial of its lead candidate, the C5 inhibitor 5G1.1-SC, for preventinginflammation during cardiopulmonary bypass. Safety and biologicaleffects will be looked at in the four-dose, placebo-controlled study inhealthy volunteers.
* Arqule Inc., of Medford, Mass., acquired exclusive rights fromYale University, of New Haven, Conn., to a set of chemistries for thesynthesis of alpha-ketoamide-based compounds. Those chemistrieshave particular applications for discovery and development ofmolecules that target proteases.
* Celgene Corp., of Warren, N.J., said it is expanding developmentof Synovir (thalidomide) to address graft-vs.-host disease and ulcersin AIDS patients. A pivotal study of the drug is ongoing in HIV-related cachexia.
* Cypress Bioscience Inc., of San Diego, said it began treatingpatients in a trial studying the Prosorba column for rheumatoidarthritis. Up to 250 seriously ill patients will participate in the study.
* GelTex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Waltham, Mass., said OnoPharmaceuticals Co. Ltd., of Osaka, Japan, terminated a deal todevelop CholestaGel, a cholesterol reducer, in Japan, Korea, Taiwanand China. The company also said it began a Phase IIb trial ofCholestaGel in the U.S.
* Intrabiotics Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Sunnyvale, Calif., completedan $8.3 million financing. The private company is developingantimicrobial products for infectious diseases. Its first products arebased on natural antimicrobial substances produced as part of theinternal host defense systems of animals, including humans.
* MedImmune Inc., of Gaithersburg, Md., signed an exclusiveworldwide license agreement with the German Cancer ResearchCenter to obtain rights to intellectual property in the area of humanpapillomavirus vaccines.
* Vertex Pharmaceutical Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., began a Phase IItrial of VX-710, in combination with doxorubicin, in liver cancerpatients. The drug is being developed to resensitize tumor cells tochemotherapeutic agents to combat multidrug resistance.
* Zonagen Inc., of The Woodlands, Texas, submitted aninvestigational new drug application related to a Phase III programfor Vasomax as a treatment of erectile dysfunction.
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