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Wednesday's Early Winners & Losers

Indevus Pharmaceuticals (IDEV) surged 11.8% in after-hours trading Tuesday after announcing it would out-license the worldwide rights to its antifungal compound aminocandin to fellow pharmaceutical Novexel, a French company spun out from Sanofi-Aventis (SNY) that, in turn, licenses the product to Indevus.

The Lexington, Mass.-based company acquired the rights to aminocandin from Aventis in 2003 before the latter merged with Sanofi. In the out-licensing deal, Indevus says it will receive $1.5 million up front, $2 million at the start of midlevel trials and $41 million in potential milestones, plus royalties on all future sales of the product. It needn't pay "significant" milestone payments or royalties to Sanofi, either. Shares were up 90 cents to $8.50.

Versant (VSNT) soared after the small software company nearly tripled its profits for the fourth fiscal quarter and swung to a fiscal full-year profit. For the quarter ended Oct. 31, the Fremont, Calif.-based company posted income of $1.4 million, or 38 cents a share, including a one-time gain of about $500,000 from the sale of its consulting business. This compares with $512,000, or 14 cents a share, a year ago. Revenue also rose 21% year over year to $4.6 million. In full-year 2006 the company earned $4.3 million, a solid improvement over its $14.6 million loss last year. Full-year revenue rose to $16.7 million from $15.7 million in fiscal 2005.

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