Neurobiological Tech halts enrollment, prepares cuts

Neurobiological Technologies started to sharpen the budget axe after halting enrollment in late-stage clinical trials for its lead drug to treat acute ischemic stroke. An independent data monitoring board advised the developer that there was no significant difference in the outcomes of patients taking Viprinex and a placebo, the primary endpoint of the study. And if the biotech decides to shelve the program, its CEO says that a 'significant reduction' in staff is likely.

"We are deeply disappointed that Viprinex did not improve overall patient outcomes in our clinical study," said Paul E. Freiman, president and chief executive officer of the Emeryville, CA-based developer. "This news is a significant set-back for our clinical program. Once we obtain the data and we have analyzed the results from this study, which we expect to occur in early 2009, we will determine whether we will pursue any further development of Viprinex. In the meantime, we are implementing plans we have developed to reduce our expenses, which will likely result in a significant reduction in our overall headcount if we determine that future development of Viprinex is not warranted."

- check out the Neurobiological release