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Thursday's Health Winners & Losers

Nastech noses lower.

Shares of

Nastech Pharmaceutical

(NSTK)

sank 6.4% to $13.17 Thursday after the company said it priced a public offering of 3.25 million shares at approximately $13.20 a share.

Novartis'

(NVS) - Get Novartis AG Report

shares sank on preliminary results showing that sales of its eye drug Visudyne, which it co-markets with

QLT

(QLTI)

, fell nearly 29%.

Novartis shares were 2.5% lower to $58.06. QLT's shares were up 4 cents to $8.74 after falling earlier in the day.

Sales of Visudyne as well as

OSI Pharmaceuticals'

(OSIP)

drug Macugen have taken a hit since the approval of

Genentech's

TheStreet Recommends

(DNA)

eye drug Lucentis in June.

Shares of medical appliance manufacturer

Somanetics

(SMTS) - Get Sierra Metals, Inc. Report

plummeted 14.3% to $20.01 after the company announced fourth-quarter revenue that fell short of expectations.

The company earned $5.3 million, or 37 cents a share, in the fourth quarter, including a $3.4 million tax benefit, down from 43 cents a share in the year-ago quarter. While revenue was up 25% to $7.68 million in the quarter, analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call were expecting revenue of $8.94 million.

Shares of

Barrier Therapeutics

(BTRX)

sank 4.7% to $8.20 after the stock was downgraded to hold from buy by analysts at Roth Capital.

"We prefer to reduce to a Hold rating at this time until further progress is achieved" in the company's research pipeline, wrote analyst Mark Taylor. He maintains a 12-month price target of $9.

Among other health care winners Thursday were

Abbott

(ABT) - Get Abbott Laboratories Report

, up 2% to $52.58;

Schering-Plough

(SGP)

, 1.3% higher to $24.84;

Merck

(MRK) - Get Merck & Co., Inc. Report

, rising 1.2% to $45.53;

Barr Pharmaceuticals

(BRL)

, gaining 3.4% to $54.40; and

Vernalis

(VNLS)

, whose shares jumped 12.5% to $2.70.

Among the losers were

Rigel Pharmaceuticals

(RIGL) - Get Rigel Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Report

, falling 3.5% to $11.48;

Novogen

(NVGN)

, off 1.3% to $12.01;

Arena Pharmaceuticals

(ARNA) - Get Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Report

, down 2.6% to $13.12;

Prestige Brands

(PBH) - Get Prestige Consumer Healthcare Inc Report

, losing 1.2% to $12.73; and

Coley Pharmaceutical

(COLY)

, down 1.8% to 9.81.