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Drug Innovator Miravant Sees Its Shares Climb 20%

September 26, 1997|From Bloomberg News

Miravant Medical Technologies shares rose 20% amid enthusiasm for its innovative drugs for cancer and other illnesses.

The San Francisco-based company's shares rose $9.75 to $58.25 in trading of 895,200, 11 times the three-month daily average. The stock touched an 18-month high of $59.25 earlier.

Robertson Stephens & Co. analyst Donald Ellis said he expects the drug development company, which is specialized in photodynamic therapy, to become profitable in 2000.

Miravant, based in Santa Barbara, is developing drugs based on its PhotoPoint technology--light-sensitive compounds that can destroy cancerous cells and leave normal cells intact.

The treatment, if proven successful, would be a substantial improvement over traditional cancer treatments such as chemotherapy or radiation, which often kill both good and bad cells and have significant side effects, Ellis said.

Miravant is expected to apply early next year for Food and Drug Administration approval of its first drug--a treatment for breast cancer. It also has more than a dozen other drugs in development, including treatments for psoriasis and prostate cancer.

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