Corvas International Inc. on Wednesday said it has received agrant from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences tostudy the potential for a new drug design approach toaccelerate discovery of therapies for heart attacks andthrombus-related diseases.

The Phase I small business innovation research grant will beused to study a drug design approach called protein packing.The methodology proposes to take advantage of known rulesfor folding or packing together proteins to form preferredprotein structures.

The goal will be discovery of drugs that inhibit key enzymesinvolved in thrombus formation, or blood clotting.

The San Diego company (NASDAQ:CVAS) is in the early stagesof developing the technology, and it will take a couple of yearsto develop therapeutic compounds, said William C. Ripka, vicepresident of pharmaceutical research.

Corvas shares closed unchanged at $9.25.-- HG

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