Human Genome Sciences Lacks Research Work

  Human Genome Sciences Inc. stated a smaller loss in the third quarter because research and development spending slided down.

  Human Genome Sciences is a biopharmaceutical corporation founded in 1992. Its stated purpose is to "discover, develop, manufacture and market innovative drugs that serve patients with unmet medical needs, with a primary focus on protein and antibody drugs." The company focuses on drug development, as well as drug discovery and currently (as of 2008) has a pipeline of novel compounds in clinical development, including drugs to treat such diseases as hepatitis C, lupus, anthrax disease, cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and HIV/AIDS.

  Human Genome Sciences finished testing a lupus drug candidate called Benlysta earlier this year, and it reported positive results from a late-stage clinical trial in July. Human Genome Sciences and its partner GlaxoSmithKline PLC plan to begin filing for regulatory approval of Benlysta during before the end of 2009.

  In the third quarter, the company lost $49 million, or 32 cents per share, compared with losses of $74.2 million, or 55 cents per share a year ago. Its research and development costs dropped to $34.8 million from $54.3 million.

   Human Genome Sciences has no products on the market, but gets money through collaborations with other companies.   

   The manufacturing payment was made by Novartis AG, Human Genome Sciences' partner on the experimental hepatitis C drug Zalbin. Earlier this month, Human Genome Science said clinical testing of Zalbin has been completed. As a result, Novartis will pay the company $75 million during the fourth quarter, and the companies will file for U.S. and European regulatory approval

  The Associated Press has contributed to the report.

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