Sheffield Medical Technologies Inc. said Tuesday that it will stopfunding research into an ovarian cancer project at Baylor College ofMedicine in Houston.Sheffield, also of Houston, has been funding the research project sinceMarch 1992. Its funding obligations are completed and Sheffielddecided not to continue with the project, which intended to develop abroad screening diagnostic for ovarian cancer.Results of studies indicated ovarian cancer could be identified in tissuesamples using an antibody test, suggesting that the marker could be areliable tissue pathology diagnostic. However, the marker could notconsistently be detected in serum samples because factors in seruminterfere with the recognition of the marker."With other portfolio projects progressing more rapidly than theovarian cancer project, we felt a direction of capital to these efforts wasimperative," Harvey Kellman, Sheffield's president, said. "We will,however, seek partnering opportunities for the commercialization ofthe marker as a reagent for use by pathologists in categorizing anddiagnosing ovarian tumors in biopsy."Sheffield, which conducts all its research through sponsoredagreements, also has a project ongoing at Baylor that involves a growthinhibiting factor to diagnose and treat prostate cancer and benignprostatic hyperplasia.Also Tuesday, Sheffield said it completed the first milestone in itspotential HIV/AIDS therapeutic, Liposome-CD4, with in vitro studiesdemonstrating anti-viral activity."Based on these results, we have made the decision to acceleratedevelopment of the program with further in vitro studies leading topreclinical simian trials," Kellman said.By incorporating CD4 into a liposome carrier, the Liposome-CD4complex is designed to bind with HIV and HIV-infected cells to clearthe lymph nodes, a reservoir of the virus. The CD4 project is acompanion technology to the company's red blood cell CD4electroinsertion (RBC-CD4) technology, which has completed Phase Istudies.Sheffield (AMEX:SHM) stock gained 38 cents per share Tuesday,closing at $5. _ Jim Shrine
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