Problem found with Corixa’s Melacine

Corixa Corp. ‘s Melacine treatment for melanoma may lose effectiveness over time, according to an analysis of newly gathered follow-up data that could delay an application to sell the experimental cancer product, or limit the patients who might benefit from it.

Researchers said last year that patients who were given the treatment, which works by harnessing the immune system against the often-fatal form of skin cancer, lived longer than patients who weren’t treated. That benefit now appears to have faded, with more patients in the Melacine group dying or relapsing in recent months than untreated patients, according to the new data.

Still, Corixa said Melacine appears to be prolonging the lives of patients with a particular genetic makeup. The company is discussing with the Food and Drug Administration the possibility of treating only patients with the special genetic mutations, and then carrying out studies to confirm the drug’s benefit in these patients after the drug is on the market.

If the FDA rejects the company’s proposal, it could mean Corixa will have to do additional studies before seeking approval for the drug.

Separately, the company said it was working on a response to questions the FDA raised in March when it delayed approval for Corixa’s cancer drug Bexxar. Corixa said it is examining the results of additional studies on Bexxar to answer agency questions about the drug’s benefits and risks.

The announcements came after the market closed.

Loudeye acquires ad-streaming company

Loudeye Technologies Inc. , a Seattle company that delivers digital content, said it has acquired Addition Systems Inc., an El Segundo, Calif.-based company.

Privately-held Addition Systems has developed proprietary technology to insert targeted advertising into streaming media programming.

Loudeye said it will begin offering the technology both as a stand-alone product and as a part of package that would include other Loudeye products.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Shurgard Storage tests automated self-service

Seattle-based Shurgard Storage Centers Inc. is going high tech, testing 24-hour self-service kiosks in 12 different cities in Washington, California and Arizona.

The kiosks will allow customers to communicate with a company representative, select a storage unit and move in even when the office is closed.

Customers will also be able to pay bills at the kiosks, which the company described as working much like automatic teller machines.

Shurgard, which has 430 storage centers in the United States and Europe, plans to expand the program if it is successful in the test markets.

The system was developed by TouchVision Inc. of Cypress, Calif.

Xbox going on market in UK next March

Microsoft said it plans to release its Xbox video game console in the United Kingdom in March of next year, five months after its U.S. introduction.

The world’s largest software maker, trying to break into the game industry with the console, said in May the console will go on sale in the United States Nov. 8 for $299, matching the price of rival Sony Corp.’s PlayStation 2.

Microsoft’s existing relationships with U.K. retailers will help sell consoles, Duncan said. The company sold 15 titles of personal computer games last year in the United Kingdom and expects to sell 25 next year.

U.K. game software developer Eidos Plc has said it plans to release seven games for Xbox and 11 titles for PlayStation2 in its fiscal year ending March 2002.


DigiMine Inc., a Bellevue data-mining and storage company, said it has opened offices in New York, Chicago, the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles. …

Seattle’s Getty Images, a provider of digital photographs and images, has opened two new sales offices in Brazil, as part of an effort to expand its South American presence. …

At the Streaming Media West show in California, Microsoft previewed Producer, software set to ship by year-end for creating, editing and publishing media presentations.

Published by: Seattle Post Intelligencer
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