Issue Date: June 4, 2007
Biotechs Cut Staff After Drug Setbacks
VaxGen is shedding 25% of its workforce, or 20 employees, after discontinuing further development of its recombinant anthrax vaccine. This is the second wave of layoffs at the troubled biotech firm, which cut more than half its workforce in January after the Department of Health & Human Services canceled a contract for 75 million doses of the anthrax vaccine. VaxGen says it is now looking for a partner to continue the vaccine program. Separately, AtheroGenics is cutting about half its staff to 67 employees in order to focus on commercializing its heart disease drug, AGI-1067. AstraZeneca ended its partnership for AGI-1067 in April after the drug came up short in a Phase III trial.
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