Pharmos Corp. and Pharmatec Inc. announced that Pharmatechas received a Phase II $450,000 small business innovationresearch (SBIR) grant from the National Institutes of Health fordeveloping a new cyclodextrin-based formulation of alfaxalone,an anesthetic induction agent for use in surgery.

In conventional formulations, alfaxalone is difficult to deliversafely and effectively. Pharmatec said its researchers havefound that a formulation based on its Molecusol brand modifiedcyclodextrins may circumvent the limitations of previousalfaxalone formulations.

The grant will enable the Gainesville, Fla., company to completethe preclinical development efforts necessary to preparealfaxalone for clinical trials. The worldwide market forapproved injectable anesthetics is nearly $2 billion, Pharmatecsaid.

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