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Business Roundup

November 24, 2008 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 86, ISSUE 47

SunEthanol has raised $25 million in a financing round that includes BP and Soros Fund Management. The firm is also changing its name to Qteros. Founded on research by Susan Leschine, a University of Massachusetts, Amherst, microbiology professor, Qteros is developing a microbe that converts cellulose into ethanol.

Air Products & Chemicals and Alberta Energy Research Institute will study a carbon dioxide capture technology developed by Air Products that the partners say could cut the cost of CO2 capture by 25%. The technology involves separating hydrogen sulfide and CO2 from hydrogen in gasification projects.

Bayer MaterialScience is forming a joint venture with Canada-based Ultimate Holographic Reproductions to commercialize high-quality, true-color holographic images. Bayer will supply color-sensitive photopolymers for the mass replication of master holograms produced by UHR.

Archemix and NitroMed will merge in an all-stock transaction that will leave former Archemix stockholders owning about 70% of the combined company. Archemix develops synthetically derived olignucleotides. The combined company will have $50 million to $60 million in cash.

Merck Serono will pay roughly $1.4 million to Galapagos in exchange for providing compounds for the former's drug discovery programs. In a separate agreement, Galapagos will extend a previous collaboration in which it performs medicinal chemistry services for an undisclosed Merck Serono drug discovery program.

Neurogen has raised $3 million by selling its chemical library to an unnamed pharmaceutical company. The Branford, Conn., firm, which is developing small-molecule drugs for psychiatric and neurological disorders, also sold four of its five buildings for $6 million.

Midatech, a British company specializing in biocompatible nanoparticles, has formed PharMida, a new company in Basel, Switzerland, supported by private Swiss investors. PharMida will focus on developing clinically validated gold nanoparticle-drug combinations.

Solvias, a Swiss contract chemistry firm, is working with Canada's Patheon to provide integrated development services to pharmaceutical and biotech companies. The alliance combines Solvias' expertise in solid-state chemistry and preformulation with Patheon's capabilities in formulation and dosage-form manufacturing.



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