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November 26, 2012
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The news summaries appearing in BIO SmartBrief are based on original information from news organizations and are produced by SmartBrief, Inc., an independent e-mail newsletter publisher. The information is not compiled or summarized by BIO. Questions and comments should be directed to SmartBrief at

  Today's Top Story 
  • FDA gives orphan-drug designation to OXiGENE's leukemia drug
    The FDA granted orphan-drug status to OXiGENE's OXi4503, an experimental drug for acute myelogenous leukemia. The drug has demonstrated strong tumor-fighting activity in preclinical and clinical trials, CEO Peter Langecker said. OXiGENE plans to apply for orphan drug designation in the European Union. An early-stage trial is being backed by the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Pharmaceutical Business Review Online (11/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Health Care & Policy 
  • Actelion seeks European approval for PAH drug macitentan
    Actelion Pharmaceuticals submitted an application to the European Medicines Agency seeking approval to market Opsumit, or macitentan, to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension. The company is positioning macitentan to be the successor of its blockbuster PAH drug Tracleer, which will lose its patent protection in 2015. Reuters (11/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Ablynx, Algeta collaborate on cancer drug R&D
    Belgian firm Ablynx and Norway-based Algeta entered into an agreement to discover and develop cancer drugs using their proprietary technologies. The collaboration will focus on a novel targeted thorium conjugate, a combination of Ablynx's nanobodies and Algeta's thorium-227 alpha-pharmaceutical payload. PharmaTimes (U.K.) (11/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Company & Financial News 
  • PlantForm lands DARPA contract to develop nerve agent antidote
    The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency awarded PlantForm a contract worth $1.77 million to improve an enzyme that enhances protection against sarin gas and other nerve agents. "The prime application of this enzyme is in people who will be going into an area where the gas has been or might be released," president and CEO Don Stewart said. PlantForm will collaborate with Kentucky BioProcessing, Aragen Bioscience and Defence Research and Development Canada on the project. The Guelph Mercury (Ontario) (11/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Food & Agriculture 
  • Staple crop genomics studies share $25.5M grants
    The U.K. Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council awarded grants totaling $25.5 million to 11 international research projects that aim to enhance staple crops using genomic technologies. The projects will seek to identify genes and markers that could be used to improve drought resistance, disease and pest tolerance, environmental adaptation, and yields by examining the genomes of beans, wheat, rice and other crops essential in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. The grant program is funded by BBSRC, the U.K. Department for International Development, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and India's Ministry of Science. GenomeWeb Daily News (free registration) (11/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Hot Topics 

Top five news stories selected by BIO SmartBrief readers in the past week.

  • Results based on number of times each story was clicked by readers.
  Industrial & Environmental 
  • 38 U.S. senators express support for Pentagon's biofuels plan
    A group of 38 senators wrote a letter to the Senate leadership, seeking the elimination of provisions in the defense spending bill that would curtail the Department of Defense's ability to invest in renewable fuels. "Alternative fuels will not supplant fossil fuels entirely; however, replacing even a fraction of the fuels consumed by DOD with domestic alternative fuels has the potential to advance U.S. national security, improve strategic flexibility and insulate the defense budget against spikes in the cost of fossil fuels," the lawmakers wrote. Roll Call (free content) (11/25) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

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    BIOtechNOW is the first in a number of new products from BIO intended to enhance our communications with the biotech community -- not only with our members, but with other stakeholders as well. This e-newsletter, combined with its website, serves as our flagship in that effort. BIOtechNOW will offer original content that emphasizes the business needs of the industry; highlight BIO's advocacy efforts; and provide a portal to all BIO activities and events. Most importantly, it will spotlight for those outside the industry the value of biotechnology. Sign up for the e-newsletter. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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