* ESCAgenetics Corp., of San Carlos, Calif., and itssubsidiary, PHYTOpharmaceuticals Inc. sold theirtechnology for paclitaxel and other taxoid compounds toKorea-based Samyang Genex Co. Ltd., which formerlywas named Sun Hill Glucose Co. Ltd. Terms were notdisclosed.
* Hemosol Inc., of Toronto, said preliminary analysis ofPhase I safety trials of Hemolink, showed the red bloodcell substitute caused no clinically significantcardiovascular, pulmonary or renal adverse effects. PhaseII trials are expected to begin early next year.
* Interneuron Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Lexington, Mass.,said the FDA's Endocrinologic and Metabolic AdvisoryCommittee will meet Nov. 16, 1995, to take a final voteon its recommendation concerning the company's newdrug application for dexfenfluramine, an anti-obesitydrug. (See BioWorld Today, Sept. 29 and Oct. 2, 1995,p.1.)
* Progenics Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Tarrytown, N.Y.,received a $1.9 million U.S. Defense Departmentresearch contract to develop a vaccine for HIV. Progenicswill conduct the work with the Southwest Foundation forBiomedical Research, of San Antonio, Texas. Part of thefunding also will be used to continue development ofProgenics second generation HIV vaccine, ProVax.
* Protein Polymer Technologies Inc., of San Diego,completed the sale of $2.5 million worth of preferredstock to Johnson & Johnson as part of a collaborationwith the New Brunswick, N.J.-based pharmaceuticalmaker's subsidiary, Ethicon Inc. After two years, thestock can be converted to Protein Polymer commonshares at market price or $3.75 per share, whichever islower. Protein Polymer also will receive up to $10million in research and development funds and milestonepayments from Ethicon.
* Sepracor Inc., of Marlborough, Mass., formed a newsubsidiary, Versicor Inc., to conduct combinatorialchemistry services for pharmaceutical and biotechnologycompanies. Sepracor has created two other subsidiaries,Hemasure Inc. and BioSepra Inc., both of Marlborough.
* Serilogicals Corp., of Atlanta, paid $2.5 million toacquire Allegheny Biologicals Inc., of Pittsburgh, Pa.Allegheny has blood donor centers in Pittsburgh andJacksonville, Fla., giving Serilogicals 31 centersnationwide to support its business of providing specialtyhuman antibody-based products.
* Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass.,could receive up to $5 million in an agreement withAlpha Therapeutic Corp., of Los Angeles, for rights toVertex's VX-366, an oral compound for hemoglobindisorders, such as sickle cell anemia and betathalassemia. The alliance grants Alpha Therapeutic alicense for development and marketing in North, Centraland South America.
* Cell Genesys Inc., of Foster City, Calif., began a PhaseII trial of its anti-HIV T cell gene therapy for treatingAIDS. The gene therapy involves modifying killer T cellswith disease-specific receptors so the cells selectivelydestroy HIV infected cells. In the study killer T cells willbe taken from a healthy identical twin and used to treatthat person's HIV-infected sibling. Subsequent studieswill use an HIV-patient's own T cells to test the genetherapy. The trials are being conducted by the NationalInstitute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which is partof the National Institutes Of Health, of Bethesda, Md.
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