Incyte Pharmaceuticals Inc. on Thursday brought aboard BASF AGas the ninth subscriber to its DNA and gene expression data bases.

With the announcement Incyte, of Palo Alto, Calif., said its partnersnow have committed more than $160 million. That means deals withthe last three data base customers, all signed this quarter, are valuedat $60 million. This year Incyte will receive at least $35 million incontractually committed revenues.

The deal with BASF, of Ludwigshafen, Germany, is not ascomprehensive as the recent deals Incyte signed with Zeneca Ltd., ofLondon, and Roche Holding Ltd., of Basel, Switzerland. BASFsubscribed solely to the core Lifeseq data base, or Library ofInformation for Expressed Sequences.

Roche subscribed to Lifeseq and Incyte's new mapping data base aswell as its data base of full-length genes. Zeneca signed up forLifeseq, the full-length gene data base and was the first customer forIncyte's microbial gene data base.

Incyte now has nine subscribers toward its goal of targeting the top50 pharmaceutical companies. "We are hoping to have revenuegrowth both by increasing the number of subscribers as well asexpanding the product offering into more software-related products,"said Denise Gilbert, Incyte's chief financial officer.

Gilbert said Incyte hopes to reach break-even by the fourth quarterand be profitable in 1997. Contractually committed funds due in1997 now stand at $45 million, she said. Incyte reported revenues of$9.9 million in 1995.

Examples of product expansion include data base architecture, whichwill help store and analyze a company's own information; a packageof search tools; and a service in which Incyte will search and editpublicly accessible information and package it for customers. Thosetypes of packages, Gilbert said, will help Incyte target smaller firms,such as biotechnology companies.

The agreement with BASF provides for annual data base subscriptionfees and fees associated with installation and training. Incyte alsocould receive milestone payments and sales royalties. Incyte willinstall and train BASF scientists in Germany and at its facility inWorcester, Mass.

Incyte's other clients are Pfizer Inc., of New York, and Pharmaciaand Upjohn, of London, both of which took equity positions; NovoNordisk A/S, of Bagsvaerd, Denmark; Hoechst Marion Roussel, ofFrankfurt, Germany; Abbott Laboratories, of Abbott Park, Ill.; andJohnson & Johnson, of New Brunswick, N.J.

Incyte's stock (NASDAQ:INCY) gained $1.75 Thursday to close at$36. n

-- Jim Shrine

(c) 1997 American Health Consultants. All rights reserved.