* Cel-Sci Corp., of Alexandria, Va., reported encouraging resultsfrom an immunization clinical study of its HGP-30 AIDSimmunogen, which is a synthetic copy of a portion of the p17 coreprotein of HIV. In the trial, severe combined immunodeficient(SCID) mice were given white blood cells from five humanvolunteers vaccinated with HGP-30. The SCID mice and a controlgroup were then challenged with HIV. Cel-Sci said a significantlylarger percentage of SCID mice receiving the white blood cells of thevaccinated volunteers did not develop HIV compared with mice whoreceived blood from unvaccinated donors.
* Gilead Sciences Inc., of Foster City, Calif., said it will makeavailable Vistide, its antiviral nucleotide, in France for AIDS-relatedcytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis under a temporary distributionprogram approved by French regulatory officials pending action onthe company's European marketing application. The drug will beused for relapsing CMV retinitis patients. Gilead filed for marketingapproval of Vistide in Europe in December 1995 and in the U.S. inOctober 1995.
* Immune Response Corp., of Carlsbad, Calif., completed enrollmentof 90 patients in a Phase II trial of its psoriasis immunogen. Thesynthetic peptide drug is designed to inhibit T cells responsible forthe disease. Results of the study are expected by the end of 1996.
* Inhale Therapeutics Systems Inc., of Palo Alto, Calif., and itspartner, Pfizer Inc., of New York, began a Phase II trial of Inhale'spulmonary insulin product, which is being developed as analternative to insulin injections for diabetes patients. Inhaledeveloped a dry powder form of insulin and a portable inhaler fordelivery of the protein hormone.
* Neurex Corp., of Menlo Park, Calif., said results from two AIDSpatients receiving SNX-111, a neuron-specific calcium channelblocker, showed the drug relieved their severe neuropathic painsymptoms after they failed to respond to opiate treatment. SNX-111also is being evaluated in a Phase II/III controlled study involving200 patients suffering from chronic pain associated with cancer andAIDS.
* Organogenesis Inc., of Canton, Mass., began a pivotal trial of itsmanufactured human skin product, Graftskin, for treatment ofdiabetic ulcers, which are chronic wounds. Graftskin already is underreview by the FDA for venous ulcers.
* Rhone-Poulenc Rorer Inc., of Collegeville, Pa., said it receivedmarketing approvals for Taxotere (docetaxel) as a treatment foradvanced breast cancer in the European countries of Austria,Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands and Norway and in Australia,Brazil and Uruguay. The three nations outside Europe also clearedthe drug for non-small cell lung cancer.
* SciClone Pharmaceuticals Inc., of San Mateo, Calif., said interimdata from its Phase III Taiwan study of Zadaxin (thymosin alpha I)for hepatitis B showed the drug achieved statistically significantresponse rates. The company said responses were defined asreductions to undetectable levels of hepatitis B virus DNA, anindication of viral load, and hepatitis B e-antigen, a viral replicationprotein.
* Serologicals Corp., of Atlanta, completed an acquisition ofSoutheastern Biologics Inc., of Austin, Texas, and two affiliates for$3.6 million and assumption of $1.1 million in liabilities.Serologicals also agreed to make additional cash payments based onfinancial performance of Southeastern products in 1996. Southeasterncollects antibodies for production of intravenous immune globulin toboost immune system responses. Serologicals also purchased Am-Rho Laboratories Inc., of Jacksonville, Fla., a specialty antibodydonor center.
* T Cell Sciences Inc., of Needham, Mass., entered into an agreementwith Mycosearch Inc., of Durham, N.C. Financial terms were notdisclosed. T Cell Sciences will use its screens and assays to identifypotential small molecule drugs from Mycosearch's natural productextracts.
(c) 1997 American Health Consultants. All rights reserved.