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Cardiome Pharma 4Q loss shrinks on lower costs

The Associated Press

Canadian drugmaker Cardiome Pharma Corp. said Tuesday it took a smaller loss in the fourth quarter because of a decrease in development expenses.

Cardiome said it lost $5.9 million, or 10 cents per share. In the fourth quarter of 2010 it took a loss of $7.3 million, or 12 cents per share. The company reported a narrower loss because of reduced expenses for development of its heart drug Brinavess. Revenue held steady at $400,000.

Analysts expected Cardiome to lose 10 cents per share on $600,000 in revenue, according to FactSet.

Brinavess is an intravenous drug used to treat atrial fibrillation, a type of heartbeat irregularity. The drug is not approved in the U.S. but it is on the market in Latin America and the European Union. On March 19, Cardiome's partner Merck & Co. said it was stopping development of an oral version of Brinavess because of regulatory issues. Cardiome shares dropped 54.4 percent that day.

Cardiome said it lost $27.9 million, or 46 cents per share, in 2011. After getting a $30 million payment from Merck and other revenue from the license agreement between the companies, Cardiome reported a profit of $35.5 million, or 58 cents per share, in 2010. Its annual revenue fell to $1.5 million from $64.6 million.

On Tuesday the stock declined 3 cents, or 4.1 percent, to 77 cents. Shares of the Vancouver company have lost 60.1 percent of their value since Merck's announcement.

In aftermarket trading, Cardiome's stock price rose 5.9 percent, to 81 cents.