In drug development, it may be hard to show statistical benefit for completely unexpected reasons, usually bad. But when AtheroGenics Inc. reported preliminary Phase II data for its AGI-1067 to prevent post-angioplasty restenosis, the company said it was unable to say whether the trial met its primary end point due an unexpected apparent biological benefit of the compound.

AGI-1067 is an oral small molecule that blocks expression of adhesion molecules. As reported last week, the 305 patients in AGIX's CART-1 study (Canadian Antioxidant Restenosis Trial) received AGI-1067, placebo or probucol for two weeks leading up to angioplasty, and for