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Sirna Therapeutics and Invitrogen and DNA Research Innovations


Sirna Reports 70-percent drop in Q3 Revenues

Sirna Therapeutics reported last week its financial results for the third quarter 2004, posting a sharp drop off in revenues amid a decline in expenses.

Sirna’s revenues for the third quarter were $84,000, compared with $283,000 in the year-ago period. The company attributed the 70 percent decline to the completion of ribozyme-related manufacturing programs as its new aptamer manufacturing arrangement with Archemix gets underway.

Sirna’s third-quarter expenses were $7.9 million, down from $11.2 million in the same period a year earlier. The company’s expenses in the third quarter of 2003 included a $6 million expense related to the acquisition of a license to RNAi-related intellectual property from the University of Massachusetts, Sirna noted.

Adjusting for the one-time licensing expense, Sirna’s net loss for the third quarter 2004 rose 57 percent over the year-ago quarter to $7.8 million. The company attributed the increase to its earlier-than-expected filing of an investigational new drug application for its age-related macular degeneration drug Sirna-027, as well as the costs associated with its ongoing hepatitis C program.

As of Sept. 30, Sirna had cash, cash equivalents, and securities available for sale totaling $35.1 million.

Invitrogen Acquires DNA Research Innovations, Posts Higher Q3 Profit

Invitrogen said last week that it has acquired nucleic acid-purification company DNA Research Innovations for up to $65 million.

Under the terms of the deal, Invitrogen paid DNA Research Innovations $35 million in cash upfront, and has agreed to pay up to $30 million more based on the achievement of undisclosed research and development milestones.

The deal gives Invitrogen control of the company’s ChargeSwitch nucleic acid-purification technology, which can be used with either DNA or RNA in a range of formats, and includes manual purification of a few samples for high throughput automated applications, the companies said. The platform can be used in bacteria, tissues, blood, forensic samples, and buccal cells.

Invitrogen also posted last week third-quarter revenues of $256.3 million, up from $197 million in the year-ago period, as the company benefited from strong sales in its BioDiscovery and BioProduction businesses.

Research and development spending also increased in the third quarter, to $19.2 million from $15.4 million year over year, while Invitrogen’s net income climbed to $28.7 million from $13.7 million.

As of Sept. 30, Invitrogen had cash and investments totaling $939.8 million.


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