RiboGene Inc. received three Small Business Innovative Research(SBIR) grants of about $75,000 each that will be used for research intotherapeutics based on translation, the process used by cells to makeproteins.The first grant will assist the Hayward, Calif., company in developingassays for PKR (protein kinase RNA-activator), an interferon-inducedprotein kinase, which can be used to identify potential antiviralcompounds and cancer drugs.The second grant will fund research and testing of a novel screeningmethod for therapeutics to treat systemic fungal infections. "We'redetermining if there's a way to interrupt the translation process at themolecule level," Kenneth Ludlum, RiboGene's vice president and chieffinancial officer, told BioWorld.The third grant will be used to evaluate the company's assay to identifycompounds that may inhibit growth and replication of HIV."The three grants correlate with three programs we have in the researchstage," Ludlum said. "The money is enabling us to expand theprograms." _ Jim Shrine

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