Tanox Biosystems Inc. announced that it has regained therights to its anti-HIV monoclonal antibody project from itsdevelopment partner, Ciba-Geigy Ltd.

Ciba-Geigy's decision is apparently part of an internal review ofits research projects. The decision "results, in part, from theuncertainty of successful clinical development of Tanox's anti-HIV neutralizing antibodies based on current assaytechnology," according to the company.

This decision will not affect the collaboration between the twocompanies on developing monoclonal antibody-based productsfor treating allergies and allergic asthma.

Meanwhile, one of Tanox's anti-HIV neutralizing monoclonalantibodies, AIDS-439, will be tested in an upcoming clinicaltrial. The Houston company said that the National Institutes ofHealth's (NIH) AIDS Clinical Drug Development Committee hasrecommended that Phase I trials of AIDS-439 be carried out ina perinatal setting in collaboration with the AIDS Clinical TrialsGroup.

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