RXi and OPKO Announce Strategic Pooling of RNAi Assets; Asthmapolis CEO Talks Sensors and The Future of Healthcare at SXSW Print E-mail
By Staff and Wire Reports   
Thursday, 07 March 2013 20:43
Below is a look at some of the headlines for companies that made news in the healthcare sector on March 7, 2013.

RXi Pharmaceuticals Corporation (OTC: RXII), a biotechnology company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing innovative therapies addressing major unmet medical needs using RNA-targeted technologies, and OPKO Health, Inc. (NYSE: OPK) announced a strategic pooling of their respective assets in the field of RNA interference (RNAi). Therapeutics based on RNAi technologies hold great promise to treat a wide range of diseases based on their potential to sustainably down-regulate the expression of a specific gene that may be over-expressed in a disease condition.

According to the terms of an asset purchase agreement jointly executed by the parties, RXi will acquire substantially all of OPKOs RNAi-related assets, including an extensive intellectual property portfolio. The patent portfolio includes 12 patent families with claims relating to important biological targets, including vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), hypoxia-inducible factor 1-alpha (HIF-1-alpha), intracellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1), angiopoietin 2 (Ang2), and complement component 3 (C3). These molecules are believed to play an important role in diseases of the eye, cancer, immune disorders, and inflammatory diseases. The acquisition is expected to close on March 12, 2013, subject to satisfaction of closing conditions.

As consideration for these assets, RXi will issue to OPKO 50 million shares of its common stock and will make milestone payments to OPKO up to an aggregate of $50 million per product tied to the successful development and commercialization of products utilizing the acquired OPKO intellectual property. In addition, upon commercialization of these products, if approved, RXi would make royalty payments to OPKO.

Together with its licensors and collaborators, OPKO was one of the early pioneers in the field of RNAi, stated Dr. Geert Cauwenbergh, President and CEO of RXi Pharmaceuticals. We are honored to have the privilege to extend OPKOs ground-breaking work, while at the same time deepening our product pipeline and broadening our technology platform and intellectual property position. Combining OPKOs RNAi assets and related intellectual property with our self-delivering (sd-rxRNA®) technology platform will further extend our competitive edge in this important field of pharmaceutical development.

We are delighted to be joining forces with RXi, stated Phillip Frost, M.D., OPKO's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. RXi has contributed a major advance to the RNAi field with its self-delivering RNAi technology. This technology overcomes a major delivery obstacle of prior RNAi technologies by significantly enhancing the uptake of the gene-targeting drug into cells. We also are impressed with RXis development capabilities, as evidenced by its rapid advancement of RXI-109, an exciting product candidate for the potential treatment of dermal scarring.


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Can you imagine a world in which all your physiologic parameters were measured, monitored and managed in such a way that you always maintained perfect health? That world may be just around the corner – and it's the topic of the SXSW panel "Sensor Technologies: The Future of Health?" on Monday, March 11 from 3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. in the Creekside Room at the Sheraton Austin, 701 East 11th Street.

Asthmapolis announced David Van Sickle , CEO and co-founder, will present along with moderator Jean-Luc Neptune , senior VP of Health 2.0, and fellow panelists Lama Nachman, principal engineer at Intel, and Mark Winter , senior director of the X Prize.

Van Sickle will discuss how the Asthmapolis sensor is the cornerstone of the company's FDA-cleared mobile health solution designed to improve the care of people with asthma, advance understanding of symptoms and triggers and help them achieve control of the disease.

Asthmapolis uses a novel combination of snap-on sensors and smartphone applications to track when and how often patients use their inhaled medications. The platform, available in both English and Spanish, then helps remind individuals of their daily preventive medications, reveal insights about their use of rescue medications and provide personalized feedback, targeted education and other tools that improve their ability to successfully manage the disease.

"By selecting this panel, the SXSW community gave sensors a vote of confidence to play a meaningful role in the future of healthcare," said David Van Sickle, CEO and founder, Asthmapolis. "We're fortunate to be recognized for our early work to make a difference in the care and treatment of asthma through sensors, apps and outreach, and I look forward to sharing our experiences – clinical, regulatory and technical – and weighing in on the current and future state of digital health."



Also Thursday:



Abbott (NYSE: ABT)
will present at the Barclays Capital 2013 Global Healthcare Conference on Thursday, March 14, 2013.

Cadence Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: CADX)
, a biopharmaceutical company focused on acquiring, in-licensing, developing and commercializing proprietary products principally for use in the hospital setting, today reported financial results for the fourth quarter and full year ended December 31, 2012.

Daxor Corporation (NYSE MKT: DXR)
, an investment company with medical instrumentation and biotechnology operations, announced today that Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center of Phoenix, Arizona has purchased a BVA-100 Blood Volume Analyzer.

DHS Holding, Co. (PINKSHEETS: DHSM)
announced today that prior to signing off on final approval of Lucky Fox Casino website, DHS has reviewed and made corrections to what it hopes will be the final layout of the Lucky Fox Casino website.

Dyadic International, Inc. (OTC Pink: DYAI)
, a global biotechnology company focused on the discovery, development, manufacture and sale of enzymes and others proteins for the bioenergy, bio-based chemicals, biopharmaceutical and industrial enzyme industries, today announced financial results for the year ended December 31, 2012.

Immunotech Laboratories, Inc. (PINKSHEETS: IMMB)
today announced the company has entered negotiations with a Canadian Wellness Organization for the use of Immunotech's Patented AIDS-HIV Treatment.

Hanover Portfolio Acquisitions (OTCQB: HVPA)
, an intellectual property investment and monetization firm, announced today it has signed a Letter of Intent to acquire 100% of The Aviva Companies Corporation.

InspireMD, Inc. (OTC: NSPR)
(the "Company" or "InspireMD") filed an amended registration statement on Form S-1 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) relating to the resumption of a proposed underwritten public offering.

Kowa Pharmaceuticals America, Inc. and Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY) announced results of a study evaluating the efficacy of LIVALO® (pitavastatin) 4 mg compared with pravastatin 40 mg in reducing low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) in HIV-infected adults with high cholesterol, or dyslipidemia.

MEDIFIRST SOLUTIONS, INC. (OTCQB: MFST)
would like to take this opportunity to update shareholders and announce the formation of a Medifirst Solutions Advisory Board. Says CEO Bruce J. Schoengood, "I am very pleased to announce the formation of a Medifirst Solutions Advisory Board.

MiMedx Group, Inc.  (OTCBB: MDXG)
, an integrated developer, manufacturer and marketer of patent protected regenerative biomaterials and bioimplants processed from human amniotic membrane, announced today its results for the year ended December 31, 2012.

Northwest Biotherapeutics (NASDAQ: NWBO)
(NW Bio), a biotechnology company developing DCVax® personalized immune therapies for solid tumor cancers, announced today that it expects to complete enrollment in its 312-patient Phase III clinical trial for Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) brain cancer within a period that is faster or more efficient than relevant comparison trials with immune therapies for the same brain cancer.

OncoGenex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: OGXI)
today highlighted key clinical development activities for its two product candidates, custirsen and OGX-427, and announced its fourth quarter and year end 2012 financial results.

Oncothyreon Inc. (Nasdaq: ONTY)
today announced that it will conduct a conference call on Thursday, March 14, 2013 at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time to discuss its financial results and provide a review of its pipeline of products in development.

Orexigen® Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: OREX)
, a biopharmaceutical company focused on the treatment of obesity, will announce financial results for the full year and fourth quarter ended December 31, 2012, on Wednesday, March 13, 2013 after the markets close.

Pharmacyclics, Inc. (NASDAQ: PCYC)
, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing innovative small-molecule drugs for the treatment of cancer and immune mediated diseases, today announced that it has commenced an underwritten registered public offering of 2,200,000 shares of its common stock, representing approximately 3.1% of the shares of common stock currently outstanding.

Rite Aid Corporation (NYSE: RAD)
today announced sales results for February.

Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHI)
and Infraredx, Inc., a medical device company committed to advancing the diagnosis and management of coronary artery and other vascular diseases, today announced the availability of a new solution that enables seamless access to Infraredx’s true vessel characterization (TVC) Imaging System via Philips’ Allura Xper catheterization (cath) lab imaging systems.

RXi Pharmaceuticals Corporation (OTC: RXII)
, a biotechnology company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing innovative therapies addressing major unmet medical needs using RNA-targeted technologies, today announced that it has entered into definitive agreements related to a private placement of approximately 113 million shares of common stock at a price of $0.145 per share, for gross proceeds of approximately $16.4 million.

Sequenom, Inc. (NASDAQ: SQNM)
, a life sciences company providing innovative genetic analysis solutions, today reported total revenues of $33.7 million and $89.7 million for the fourth quarter and full year of 2012, respectively.

Wipro Technologies, the Global Information Technology, Consulting and Outsourcing business of Wipro Limited (NYSE: WIT), today announced the launch of the Wipro AssureHealth platform in partnership with Microsoft.

WuXi PharmaTech (Cayman) Inc. (NYSE: WX)
, a leading research and development outsourcing company serving the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device industries, with operations in China and the United States, today announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and full year of 2012.

Zynex, Inc. (OTCQB: ZYXI)
, a provider of non-invasive medical devices for electrotherapy and stroke rehabilitation, neurological diagnosis and cardiac monitoring, announced today that it will host an investor webcast, Thursday, March 14, 2013 at 9:00 a.m. Mountain Time - 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time to discuss the Company's 2012 year end results.



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