Monday, December 19, 2005

News - Kirin develops antibody that may work for bird flu

Kirin Brewery Co. Ltd., Japan's second-largest brewer, said on Monday that its U.S. subsidiary has developed an antibody that may be effective against bird flu, sending its share price higher.

A company spokesman said the subsidiary, Gemini Science Inc., is planning to develop a drug through a partnership, but added that it would take time to commercialize any such product.

"It's hard to say how long, but I can say that it's not going to be in two or three years," he said.

Kirin Brewery shares rose 7.1 percent to 1,412 yen after earlier climbing as high as to 1,471 yen, a level last seen in 1999.

The H5N1 strain of avian influenza has killed 71 people since late 2003, spreading through flocks of poultry across Asia and into Europe. Anti-bird flu measures are a closely watched topic in the stock market.

Last Thursday, textile maker Nisshinbo Industries Inc. surged after the company said it and a Japanese university had jointly developed a new fabric that destroys the bird flu virus. It can be used for masks and clothing as well as for materials for chicken coops, the company said.

Global Coverage Article


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