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Exelixis restructures, refocuses on XL184

December 3, 2010 12:37 AM UTC

Exelixis Inc. (NASDAQ:EXEL) will reduce headcount by about 260 (65%) to 140 over the next two years and focus internal development on cancer compound XL184. The announcement came during the company's annual R&D day on Thursday. The cuts will come across the entire company, including employees in discovery, development and G&A. Exelixis plans to partner its remaining preclinical and clinical compounds, including two -- XL228 and XL888 -- that are in Phase I testing for cancer.

At the meeting, President and CEO Michael Morrissey said the "turmoil" of 1H10 was the catalyst for the change in direction, citing a prior headcount reduction, the return of rights to XL184 from Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. (NYSE:BMY), and the departure of CEO George Scangos. In 2011, Exelixis plans to start a Phase III trial of XL184 for castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) and submit an NDA for the compound to treat medullary thyroid cancer (MTC). The company also announced plans to build out a commercial organization for XL184. ...