A lot of phone calls get made every week at BioCentury, most of them remarkably mundane. Imagine the surprise of a BioCentury reporter who called Wyeth-Ayerst last week to ask a few routine questions about the decision to halt its U.S. Phase II/III trials of Fiblast trafermin basic fibroblast growth factor in acute stroke with partner Scios Inc. Our reporter got an earful from Wyeth-Ayerst, implying that we were idiots for not knowing that these were Phase II trials.

"They were dose-ranging trials, we would not call them pivotal," said Wyeth-Ayerst spokesperson Doug Petkus. "They were Phase II studies. We wanted an optimal dosing regimen."