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Firms in Talks on Drug for Gehrig's Disease

April 29, 1998|Bloomberg News

Cephalon Inc. and Chiron Corp. are talking with the Food and Drug Administration as it nears a decision on whether they can market their Lou Gehrig's disease treatment, Myotrophin, in the U.S. "We are still in the throes of protracted discussions with the FDA on Myotrophin," said Edward Penhoet, chief executive and president of Emeryville-based Chiron. "We expect it will be decided one way or the other by May 12." The decision will end several years of negotiations with regulators on the future of the drug that an FDA panel last year refused to back for approval, saying there wasn't enough evidence of its effectiveness. Though the drug is being developed by both companies, its fate is especially important for West Chester, Pa.-based Cephalon, which has yet to win full FDA approval for one of its drugs. Cephalon shares rose 31 cents to close at $11.94, and Chiron shares rose 25 cents to $19.88. Both trade on Nasdaq.

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