Hopkins forms joint venture to develop, sell cancer drugs

January 11, 1995|By Kevin L. McQuaid | Kevin L. McQuaid,Sun Staff Writer

The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine has teamed with a biopharmaceutical company to develop and market drugs and processes for the treatment of cancer and other diseases, the university announced yesterday.

Through a new company named Gryphon Pharmaceuticals Inc., the joint venture between Osiris Therapeutics Inc. and the university will focus on cells responsible for blood and immune system formation and maintenance. The university expects that

Gryphon products could have applications in the treatment of leukemia, anemia and some tumors.

Osiris will fund the venture through a $2.2 million grant to Gryphon, in exchange for Hopkins' proprietary research and future discoveries by Hopkins' physicians Curt I. Civin and Donald Small. The university and the two doctors, who will be members of Gryphon's board, are scheduled to receive a share of any royalties generated by the sale of Gryphon products.

The new company will occupy a shared facility with Osiris in Fells Point.

Osiris' President and Chief Executive Officer James S. Burns also will be chairman and chief executive of Gryphon.

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