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Oxigene Drug Reduces Tumor Blood Flow

10.25.2004, 10:30 AM

Pharmaceutical company Oxigene Inc. reported Monday that researchers found one of its cancer drugs significantly reduced blood flow to tumors in lung cancer patients in an early stage clinical trial.

Shares of Oxigene rose 57 cents, or 9.6 percent, to $6.50 on the Nasdaq in early-morning trading, and later leveled at $6.22, up 29 cents or 4.9 percent.

The company said researchers found that eight patients with inoperable non-small cell lung cancer had reduced blood flow to their tumors four hours after being treated with the drug candidate Combretastatin A4P, or CA4P. Researchers confirmed that the blood flow to the tumors had not recovered after 72 hours, the company said.

Oxigene said that researchers will be enrolling patients with prostate cancer and head and neck cancer in early stage clinical trials to study the effects of CA4P through early next year, with mid-stage clinical trials to follow.

CA4P belongs to a class of drugs called vascular targeting agents, which restrict blood flow to solid tumors by attacking the vessels that feed them.

The company also is studying the drug in early- and mid-stage clinical trials to treat wet age-related macular degeneration, a condition where abnormal and leaky blood vessels grow in front of the retina and cause blindness.

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