Human Genome Sciences Inc. said it has received its firstmilestone payment of $12.5 million from SmithKline BeechamCorp. This payment is for the full operational use of at least 35automatic DNA sequence machines and 15 catalyst orcomparable robotic instruments for DNA sequencing.

Under a May 1993 agreement, SKB is investing a total of $125million in the sequencing company (see BioWorld, Nov. 15).HGS, a private company based in Rockville, Md., was founded toconvert genomic data into novel drug and diagnostic products.

SKB has the first right to develop and market drugs, vaccinesand diagnostic products and services based on human genesequence data discovered by HGS. HGS will receive royalties onsales of products and will have the option to co-promotecertain products. It will also retain rights to its genetic data foruse in developing gene therapy and antisense agents.

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