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Health Stocks in Motion

Shares of Ariad Pharmaceuticals (ARIA) were among the worst-performing health-related stocks Monday, falling 9% after the company posted a second-quarter loss that was wider than expected.

The company reported a loss of $14.1 million, or 27 cents a share, on sales of $350,000. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call were expecting a loss of 24 cents a share on sales of $230,000. A year ago the company reported a loss of $9.2 million, or 18 cents a share, on sales of $188,000. At the end of the second quarter the company had $50.2 million in cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities.

Separately, Ariad said that it plans to sell 6 million shares of stock under an existing shelf registration statement. The underwriters, which include Lazard Capital Markets and SG Cowen, have been granted an option to purchase an additional 900,000 shares to cover over-allotments. Shares were trading down 69 cents to $6.93.

Ivax (IVX) traded actively after the company posted second-quarter results. The company, which is in the process of being acquired by Teva Pharmaceutical Industries (TEVA), reported earnings of $45.6 million, or 17 cents a share, on sales of $577.3 million. Analysts were expecting earnings of 20 cents a share on sales of $541.9 million. A year ago the company earned $48.1 million, or 18 cents a share, on sales of $464 million. Looking ahead, Ivax reaffirmed its 2005 earnings guidance of 76 cents to 86 cents a share, saying that it expects earnings to be in the middle to upper end of the range. Analysts are expecting earnings of 82 cents a share. For 2006, the company expects earnings of $1.35 to $1.55 a share, in line with the $1.44 a share that analysts are expecting. Shares were trading up 7 cents to $25.55.

Shares of Nanogen (NGEN) rose 2% after the company said that it received a $2.5 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, a division of the U.S. National Institutes of Health. The five-year grant will fund a research project to develop a diagnostic system that will be used by clinical labs to identify infectious agents that cause sepsis and community-acquired pneumonia. "The grant will enable Nanogen to develop improved molecular biological methods, miniaturize those methods, and demonstrate the performance of this new molecular diagnostic approach to diagnose sepsis and CAP in a hospital laboratory setting," Nanogen said. Shares were trading up 7 cents to $4.47.

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