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shares tanked as Wall Street took a dim view of the company's preliminary fourth-quarter sales estimate. Share were down nearly 10% after the medical laser maker put sales in the just completed quarter at $24 million, about $4 million short of the Thomson First Call consensus. The company said more than $3 million of product has been shipped but not yet received by customers, precluding its recognition as revenue in the period ended Dec. 31. Shares fell $3.04 to $28.71.

Epix Pharmaceuticals

(EPIX) - Get ESSA Pharma Inc Report

rose after the company said it expects to close enrollment sooner than previously projected in a Phase IIa clinical trial of its imaging agent EP-2104R. The company "believes it has resolved patient accrual issues" that slowed progress in the trial and now expects to complete full enrollment of 48 patients this quarter. "The company has seen encouraging images, particularly in the carotid artery cohort of patients, which may be indicative of EP-2104R's potential utility for identifying patients at risk of stroke," Epix said. The stock was recently up 19 cents, or 4.7%, to $4.23.


( WYE) rose moderately after the drug giant agreed to pay $40 million to fund a technology partnership with privately held biotech Trubion Pharmaceuticals. The agreement is for the discovery, development and commercialization of products that treat inflammatory diseases and cancer. Payments to Trubion could reach $800 million based development milestones and the possible purchase of stock when and if Trubion makes an initial public offering. Wyeth was recently up 12 cents at $46.19.

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Aspreva Pharmaceuticals

( ASPV) rose after it and Roche received orphan drug status on CellCept in the treatment of myasthenia gravis, an autoimmune disorder characterized by muscle weakness. CellCept, which is already approved to control organ rejection in transplant patients, is currently in a Phase III trial testing it in conjunction with corticosteroids in patients with myasthenia gravis. Enrolment in the study is complete, and Aspreva expects to conclude the trial in late 2006. Orphan drug status provides for a period of marketing exclusivity in treatments for certain rare diseases. Aspreva was recently up 8 cents to $15.80.

Shares of


( SFCC) roared higher Tuesday after the company said its CEO retired and its president and chairman resigned. The shares, which are down more than 60% since


published a story in November raising ethical questions about SFBC's policies for warning test subjects of risks in medical studies. SFBC manages clinical trials for drug developers. In a release, the company said it named Jeffrey McMullen as CEO after Arnold Hantman retired. Lisa Krinsky, the president and chairman, resigned.


reported Tuesday that the executives left the company just as Senate investigators were preparing to interview them about practices at a clinical lab. The stock was recently up $2.87, or 18%, to $18.88.