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12:00 AM
 | 
Oct 15, 2007
 |  BioCentury  |  Product Development

Tripping on the steps

NPS Pharmaceuticals Inc. unwound a deal with AstraZeneca plc last week for metabotropic glutamate receptors, thus completing the biotech's seven-month effort to focus on its late stage projects and shore up its balance sheet. With the house in order, NPSP didn't have to wait long for an inflection point, as the company reported Phase III data on Thursday for Gattex teduglutide to treat short bowel syndrome.

The results, however, were mixed. Thus, to deliver on Gattex - a key component of the company's focus - NPSP will now have to persuade FDA to focus on the positive results seen with the lower dose of the glucagon-like peptide 2 analog.

The news capped a week in which investors had sold NPSP shares on the disclosure that financier George Soros had unloaded some 2 million shares of the stock (see Ebb & Flow, A10).

Short bowel syndrome occurs when a patient has a large portion of the bowel removed; symptoms include diarrhea, dehydration, malnourishment and weight loss. Patients are fed intravenously during the night (parenteral nutrition), but with...

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