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Health Stocks in Motion

Biopure (BPURD) rose 19.5% after it said the U.S. Naval Medical Research Center has applied to the FDA for approval to conduct a two-stage clinical trial of the company's oxygen therapeutic Hemopure drug for the out of hospital treatment of trauma patients, where blood is not available for transfusion.

If the trial is approved, the phase II and III of the study will assess the safety and efficacy of Hemopure compared with standard treatment of hemorrhagic shock (acute blood loss). Patients would be randomized to receive either Hemopure or standard therapy of the injury and during transport to the hospital. The company said the trial would require an exception from informed consent and would include a community consultation and disclosure program, as defined in federal regulations. To date, Congress has appropriated $18.5 million to the military to develop Hemopure for potential military and civilian use. Biopure Corporation develops and manufacturers intravenously administered pharmaceuticals, called oxygen therapeutics. The stock finished up 26 cents to $1.59.

Other health stocks on the move were Merck (MRK), up 16 cents to $31.55; Pfizer (PFE), up 21cents to $27.89; Elan (ELN), down 35 cents to $6.78; Biogen, down 22 cents to $34.79; and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), down a penny to $66.47.

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