Mayo Clinic researchers have reported that patients whoreceived California Biotechnology Inc.'s Auriculin peptide wereless likely to develop signs of kidney impairment followingradiocontrast diagnostic procedures.

The preliminary results from Phase II tests of the atrialnatriuretic peptide, used to prevent the kidney toxicity thatcan result from use of radiocontrast dyes, were reportedSunday at a meeting of the American Society of Nephrology.

Defining dye-induced nephropathy as a 25 percent decrease ina marker of kidney function called creatinine clearance, 13percent of patients given the peptide developed the problemcompared with 30 percent of placebo-treated patients.

The data were gathered from 75 patients enrolled a trial thatwill include a total of 130 patients. Dose evaluation iscontinuing, and Phase III studies that will use the best dosewill begin in 1992, the Mountain View, Calif., company said.

Ten percent of acute kidney failure results from use ofradiocontrast dyes. Cal Bio estimated the U.S. market forpreventive use of the peptide at 280,000 cases a year.

Cal Bio's stock (NASDAQ:CBIO) closed at $19.88, up $2.13. -- RF

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