Onyx Moves Higher in the Wake of the Failure of Bristol-Myers' Experimental Drug Brivanib; Ardea has filed for a mixed shelf offering. Print
By Staff and Wire Reports   
Friday, 23 December 2011 20:03
Below is a look at some of the headlines for companies that made news in the healthcare sector on December 23, 2011.

Onyx Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ONXX +4.3%) moves higher in the wake of the failure of Bristol-Myers' (NYSE:BMY -0.2%) experimental drug brivanib to improve survival in liver cancer patients in a late-stage clinical trial.

The result is seen as reducing the competitive risk for ONXX's Nexavar, the only drug approved for liver cancer and a key contributor to the company's revenue and valuation.


Ardea Biosciences (NASDAQ:RDEA), which closed the day with a market cap of $470.4M, has filed for a $150M mixed shelf offering. The company plans to partly use the proceeds to help fund a clinical trial for its Lesinurad drug for treating gout.  Lesinurad is an oral inhibitor of the URAT1 transporter in the kidney that regulates uric acid excretion. According to a press release from Ardea Biosciences, around 90% of gout patients are thought to excrete too little uric acid, and studies have found that defective renal transporters, which promote excretion of uric acid under normal circumstances, are genetically linked to gout.
Since currently available gout drugs such as the xanthine oxidase inhibitors allopurinol and febuxostat have a mechanism of action different from URAT1 inhibitors, the hope is that lesinurad will be able to be used in conjunction with these other drugs to help the many gout patients who are not adequately treated with existing therapies alone. In previous Phase 1 and 2 trials, lesinurad has been tested on over 700 patients as a single agent and in combination with allopurinol and febuxostat.

Also Friday:

Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) today announced the following webcast for the investment community:  30th Annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference.

Medifocus Inc. (Medifocus or the Company) (TSX VENTURE:MFS)(OTCQX:MDFZF) is pleased to announce that the cease trade orders originally issued by Ontario Securities Commission on August 16, 2011 and the British Columbia Securities Commission on August 9, 2011 were revoked on December 21, 2011 and December 22, 2011 respectively.

MMRGlobal, Inc. (OTCBB: MMRF) ("MMR") today announced that it has reached a final agreement on an amended Articles of Association for Unis Tonghe MMR International Health Management Service Co., Ltd. (the "Chinese JV") with its Chinese Joint Venture partner, Unis-Tonghe Technology (Zhengzhou).

The Coalition to Save Pure, a group of stockholders and director nominees that has nominated a slate of six individuals to replace the current board of directors of Pure Bioscience, Inc. (NASDAQ: PURE), today filed its preliminary proxy statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Winner Medical Group Inc. (Nasdaq: WWIN) ("Winner Medical" or the "Company"), a leading China-based exporter and retailer of high-quality medical dressings and consumer products made from 100% cotton, today announced that BDO China Shu Lun Pan Certified Public Accountants LLP ("BDO China") has been appointed as the Company's independent registered public accounting firm to replace BDO Limited ("BDO Hong Kong"), which resigned on December 23, 2010.

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