Delta Biotechnology Ltd. said Monday that production of recombinanthuman albumin (rHA) will begin by the end of the month, and set thestage for trials of the blood-volume expander.Delta, of Nottingham, England, is owned by Ohmeda Inc., of LibertyCorner, N.J., the health care unit of UK-based The BOC Group. JudeeShuler, director of health communications for Ohmeda, told BioWorldthat the first, full-scale U.S. trials of rHA "are scheduled to begin eitherat year's end or the beginning of 1995." Production will be inNottingham.Serum albumin is the major plasma protein. The world market for thehuman serum albumin is more than 400 tons per year, with annual salesof $1.4 billion, Ohmeda said."As concerns about adequate blood supplies and the purity and costs ofhuman serum albumin continue to rise, the need increases for a safe,reliable and cost-effective supply," said Robert Capetola, managingdirector of Delta. "We have developed a sophisticated recombinantyeast fermentation technology to meet that demand." _ Jim Shrine

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