In the pipeline

• Celgene Corp has announced that its drug CC-5013 (Revimid) received fast-track designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of myelodysplastic syndromes.

• Chiron Corp. has initiated a Phase III trial in the United States for Menjugate, the company’s conjugated vaccine for the prevention of meningococcal C disease.

• Immusol announced today that the first patient was treated in a Phase I physician-sponsored trial using its investigational new drug, code-named VIT100, to treat keloids and hypertrophic scars.

• Favrille has expanded its current Phase II clinical trial of the company’s investigational agent FavId, a patient-specific anti-lymphoma vaccine, in combination with rituximab (Rituxan), to include patients who have not received prior treatment for their low-grade or follicular non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. With this expansion, the study is now enrolling patients who have not received any prior treatment for their lymphoma, as well as those patients who are relapsed or refractory to their prior treatments. Prior treatments may include chemotherapy alone, rituximab alone, or chemotherapy and rituximab used in combination.

• Sucampo Pharmaceuticals has initiated a multicenter safety and efficacy study for the treatment of constipation-predominant irritable bowel syndrome with its proprietary agent SPI-0211, a novel chloride channel activator.

• Inhibitex has received FDA clearance to initiate a Phase I clinical trial to assess the safety and tolerability of its second product candidate, Aurexis, a humanized monoclonal antibody. Aurexis is being developed for the prevention and treatment of life-threatening S. aureus infections.