Our grapevine has revealed one or two small rumblings by biotech companies thinking about responding to their low share prices by buying back stock.

The appeal is the ability to buy back shares at prices a fraction of what they were when the companies went public - prices shareholders and companies alike may see as grossly unfair - while, one hopes, propping up prices at the same time.

However, with cash so dear, we wondered what rationale could drive management to donate blood for the sake of even the shareholders. With this in mind, we checked out a couple of companies that already have pursued the repurchase route.

Emisphere Technologies Inc. in May announced that it would

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