* AntiCancer Inc., of San Diego, received a $4.4 million equityinvestment from ThermoLase Corp., of San Diego, giving it a 10percent interest in the privately held AntiCancer. ThermoLase alsoentered a licensing agreement to use AntiCancer's liposome drugdelivery system for hair removal, hair growth and hair coloring.ThermoLase paid $100,000 up front and agreed to make another $1.5million in milestone payments.
* Biomatrix Inc., of Ridgefield, Conn., said it received $5 millionfrom Collagen Corp., of Palo Alto, Calif., for granting certainmarketing rights to Hylaform, a hylan gel used to correct facialwrinkles and depressed scars. Collagen gained marketing rights inEurope, Japan, Australia, Canada and elsewhere. Biomatrix alsogranted Collagen U.S. rights once the product is approved there.Biomatrix will manufacture the product and get certain royalties onsales.
* Cortex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Irvine, Calif., reported positiveresults from its third Phase I study of Ampalex, a drug beingdeveloped as a memory enhancer for Alzheimer's disease patients.The three studies were conducted in healthy volunteers and inaddition to demonstrating the drug was safe, the trials revealedpositive effects on memory. A Phase II study in Alzheimer's diseasepatients is expected to begin in the next few months. Ampalex is asmall-molecule compound designed to enhance the function of theampa-type glutamate receptor in the brain.
* Eli Lilly and Co., of Indianapolis, was granted FDA marketingapproval for Humalog (insulin lispro) for treatment of diabetes. Theproduct now is approved in 21 countries.
* Geltex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Waltham, Mass., started two PhaseIII trials of RenaGel for the control of elevated phosphate levels inchronic kidney failure patients. They are expected to be completed in1997. (See BioWorld Today, May 10, 1996, p. 2.)
* Genetics Institute Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., entered a researchagreement with Ixion Biotechnology Inc., of Alachua, Fla., to supportdevelopment of its technology for in vitro growth of functioningpancreatic islets, which can be transplanted to diabetes patients fortreatment of the disease. Degeneration of pancreatic islets, whichsecrete insulin, is a cause of diabetes. Financial terms were notdisclosed.
* Gensia Inc., of San Diego, began a Phase I safety trial of anadenosine regulating agent, GP3296, which is being developed fortreatment of pain. In preclinical studies the drug also showedencouraging results for epilepsy.
* Genzyme Corp., of Cambridge, Mass., said Ceredase enzyme wascleared for marketing in Japan as a treatment for Gaucher's disease.Genzyme said it is the first biotechnology company to gain productapproval in Japan without a partner.
* Pharmacyclics Inc., of Sunnyvale, Calif., filed for a proposedpublic offering of 2 million shares of common stock. Underwritershave an option to purchase another 300,000 shares.
* SciClone Pharmaceuticals Inc., of San Mateo, Calif., receivedapproval in the Philippines to market Zadaxin (thymosin alpha 1) forchronic hepatitis B. The drug has been approved in Singapore andSciClone has filed for marketing clearance in other Asian countries.Zadaxin is designed to stimulate the immune system to fight thedisease. The company expects to have results from a Phase III trial inTaiwan for hepatitis B this year. Findings from Phase III study in theU.S. for hepatitis C are expected in early 1997.
* Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., said results of apilot Phase II study of VX-366, which is designed to boostproduction of hemoglobin F, showed the drug was safe and increasedlevels of the oxygen-carrying protein in patients with betathalassemia. Stimulating hemoglobin F has been shown to improvesymptoms associated with beta thalassemia and sickle cell anemia.VX-366, an oral compound, is being developed in collaboration withAlpha Therapeutic Corp., of Los Angeles, and Ravizza FramaceuticiSpA, a subsidiary of BASF AG, of Ludwigshafen, Germany.
(c) 1997 American Health Consultants. All rights reserved.