Collagen Corp. announced Thursday that its Collagraft BoneGraft Matrix Strip was approved by FDA for the treatment ofacute long bone fractures and traumatic osseous defects.

This second-generation product has the same components asthe Palo Alto, Calif., company's initial Collagraft Bone GraftMatrix (Collagraft Implant), which was approved last May.However, the new Collagraft Strip product is pre-mixed andfreeze-dried so it does not require refrigeration, whileCollagraft Implant is mixed by the surgeon into a paste-likeconsistency and requires refrigerated storage.

The Collagraft products are composed of fibrillar collagen andhydroxyapatite tricalcium phosphate. Collagraft is placed in thefracture site, and these materials provide a scaffolding aroundwhich the patient's new bone will grow, gradually replacing thegraft material as healing progresses.

Collagraft implant and strip were jointly developed by Collagen(NASDAQ:CGEN) and Zimmer Inc., a Bristol-Myers Squibbsubsidiary. Zimmer of Warsaw, Ind., holds U.S. and Asianmarketing rights to the products. Zimmer, which plans to beginshipping Collagraft Strip after March 1, would not say what theprice of the strip will be, but noted that it will be higher thanthe implant, which has a list price of $625 for the large kit and$325 for the small kit. Zimmer will continue to sell the implantto customers who prefer it to the strip.

Collagen's stock was down 63 cents a share on Friday, closing at$30.25.

-- Brenda Sandburg News Editor

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