OXFORD - Prudent and cowardly were just two of the market reactions to the decision by European regulators not to press ahead with their deliberations on Zacutex, British Biotech plc's platelet activating factor antagonist to treat acute pancreatitis.

Last week's decision to postpone a decision on Zacutex until after an ongoing Phase III trial in the U.S. is completed could have serious implications for the future health of both British Biotech (LSE:BBG; BBIOY) and the U.K. biotech sector, which is currently suffering at the hands of investors who are losing patience with biotech and its apparent inability to keep its promises.