* Avid Corp., of Philadelphia, said it secured an exclusive optionfrom The Dupont Merck Pharmaceuticals Co. for a second-generation HIV protease inhibitor, DMP 450, which has completed aPhase I trial.

* Centocor Inc., of Malvern, Pa., said underwriters of a recentoffering purchased 525,000 shares at $33 apiece, bringing netproceeds to about $126.2 million. The company also notified atrustee to redeem all outstanding 7.25 percent convertiblesubordinated notes due Feb. 1, 2001. (See BioWorld Today, March13, 1996, p. 1.)

* Cytel Corp., of San Diego, said it vaccine Theradigm, in a Phase IIstudy, safely stimulated a hepatitis B-specific immune response inchronically infected patients. The company plans to move forwardinto definitive efficacy studies.

* Immunex Corp., of Seattle, received marketing clearance foretoposide injection, a generic chemotherapy agent indicated for thetreatment of refractory testicular tumors and small cell lung cancer.The drug is available in 100 and 250 mg vials.

* Neurobiological Technologies Inc., of Richmond, Calif., began a100-patient Phase II trial of corticotropin-releasing factor in patientswith rheumatoid arthritis. The goal of the double-blind, placebo-controlled study is reduction of joint inflammation.

* Organogenesis Inc., of Canton, Mass., said a class action suitbrought against the company alleging securities laws violations hasbeen dismissed, without prejudice.

* SangStat Medical Corp., of Menlo Park, Calif., said underwritersfor a recent public offering exercised their overallotment option on450,000 shares, resulting in gross proceeds from the offering of $48.3million. (See BioWorld Today, March 11, 1996, p. 1.)

* Serono Laboratories Inc., of Norwell, Mass., said it is in ongoingdiscussions with the FDA regarding the new drug application forSerostim, the company's mammalian cell-derived recombinanthuman growth hormone for AIDS wasting. An FDA panel voted 8-to-7 recently against recommending approval of the product. (SeeBioWorld Today, March 5, 1996, p. 1.)

* Somatogen Inc., of Boulder, Colo., received FDA clearance tobegin initial human safety studies of its recombinant humanhemoglobin, rHb1.1, as an agent for stimulating red blood cellformation. The first study is expected to involve 50 patients with end-stage renal disease.

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