February 11, 2010 / 4:59 PM / 10 years ago

UPDATE 1-Oxigene to cut half the jobs, sees Q1 charge

* To cut 20 jobs, or 49 pct of workforce

* Sees charges of $600,000 in Q1

* To continue mid-stage study of lung cancer drug

* To stop enrollment in anaplastic thyroid cancer trial

* Shares fall 12 pct

Feb 11 (Reuters) - Drug developer Oxigene Inc OXGN.O said it will cut half of its workforce and take related charges in the first quarter as part of a restructuring to focus on key assets and cut costs, sending its shares down 12 percent.

Oxigene said it will continue to advance the mid-stage trial of its experimental lung cancer drug Zybrestat, but plans to stop further enrollment in the mid/late-stage clinical trial, named FACT, in anaplastic thyroid cancer.

The company, which develops drugs to treat cancer and eye diseases, said the job cut will allow it to focus its resources on its highest-value clinical assets and reduce its cash utilization.

The company expects to take related charges of about $600,000 and to generate annual savings of about $2.6 million, beginning in the second quarter of 2010, Oxigene said in a statement.

Shares of the company were down 12 percent at $1.15 in late morning trade Thursday on Nasdaq. (Reporting by Krishnakali Sengupta in Bangalore; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier)

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