BIOGEN COMPLETES PREFERRED STOCK REDEMPTIONBiogen Inc. on Monday said it completed the previouslyannounced redemption of its $2.13 convertible preferred stock.The Cambridge, Mass., company said virtually all of the 2.76million shares of preferred stock were converted into commonstock (NASDAQ:BGEN). Holders of the preferred stock had theoption of taking $26.73 in cash for each preferred share orconverting at the rate of 1.6 shares of common per share ofpreferred. Biogen, whose products include alpha interferon andhepatitis vaccines, said the retirement of the security willsave the company $5.9 million in annual interest payments.Biogen stock closed at $25.63, down $2.25, on Monday.
UNDERWRITERS BUY MGI OVERALLOTMENT
MGI Pharma Inc. (NASDAQ:MOGN) of Minneapolis, which lastweek completed a secondary offering of common stock, onMonday said its underwriters had exercised an option to buy300,000 shares to cover overallotments. The shares, priced at$8.25, bring the total number of shares issued in the offeringto 2.3 million. The underwriters were Dain Bosworth Inc. andWilliam Blair & Co. MGI markets an infusion therapy fortreatment and prevention of osteoporosis.
DNAP GENETICALLY ENGINEERS ROSES
DNA Plant Technology Corp. of Cinnaminson, N.J., hasgenetically engineered roses using Agrobacteriumtumefaciens, a plant bacterium commonly used to transfergenes into plants. Company scientists presented data on whatDNAP believes is the first transformation of a commercialhybrid tea rose at last week's 1991 World Congress on Cell andTissue Culture in Anaheim, Calif.
The red Royalty roses contained commonly used marker genesfor kanamycin resistance and GUS expression. The company(NASDAQ:DNAP) is now introducing genes for diseaseresistance, vase life and altered colors into the variety.
The annual world market for cut roses exceeds $1 billion.
FDA CLEARS ENTERIC'S IMMUNOASSAY TEST
The Food and Drug Administration has granted clearance toEnteric Products Inc., a Westbury, N.Y., developer ofgastrointestinal diagnostic products and treatments, tomarket its patented immunoassay test for use in detecting thebacterium Helicobacter pylori, a leading cause of gastritis,gastric ulcers, duodenal ulcers and gastric cancer. EPI is awholly owned subsidiary of E-Z-EM Inc. (NASDAQ: EZEM).
ORGANOGENESIS GETS GRANT FOR CORNEA MODEL
Organogenesis Inc. of Cambridge, Mass., has been awarded agrant by the National Eye Institute for the construction of anin vitro model of the human cornea. The first phase of thegrant, which will be completed within six months, is valued atless than $100,000.
The model will be designed as an alternative to the rabbit eyein the Draize method test and as a tool for basic research intocorneal cell biology, according to Jonathan Burger, director ofinvestor relations at Organogenesis (AMEX:ORG). "Eventuallythe grant will lead toward the development of a cornealreplacement product," Burger said.
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