Third-quarter profit at

Idec Pharmaceuticals

(IDPH)

grew on strong sales of the cancer drug Rituxan.

The San Diego-based biotech firm

preannounced results on Oct. 9, so there wasn't much drama in today's announcement. Idec reported a 42% rise in net income to $38.4 million, or 22 cents per share, besting Wall Street estimates by a penny per share, according to Thomson Financial/First Call.

Total revenue for the quarter rose 49% to $103.7 million. Idec generated $98.6 million in revenue based on total third-quarter Rituxan U.S. net sales of $269.6 million, reported by its marketing partner,

Genentech

(DNA)

. Rituxan is used to treat patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Sales of the cancer drug Zevalin totaled $5 million in the quarter. Idec controls 100% of Zevalin's profits.

Idec shares closed Wednesday down 2.5% to $40.42.