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Navidea advances on new Lymphoseek study data

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of Navidea Biopharmaceuticals Inc. rose Thursday after the company reported favorable new clinical trial results for its imaging agent Lymphoseek.

Navidea said Thursday that when patients were injected with Lymphoseek, doctors were able to identify cancerous lymph nodes in 38 out of 39 patients believed to have squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck.

The company said the results suggest doctors could use Lymphoseek to find cancerous lymph nodes in the head and neck without removing and dissecting dozens of additional nodes to search for cancer and determine how far a patient's cancer has spread. That could make surgeries less invasive.

Lymph nodes are small organs spread throughout the body, and they are an important part of the immune system.

The Food and Drug Administration approved Lymphoseek March 13 to help doctors locate lymph nodes in patients with breast cancer and skin cancer. The agency said Lymphoseek is the first new drug approved to help locate lymph nodes in more than 30 years.

Shares of the Dublin, Ohio, company gained 17 cents, or 6.6 percent, to $2.72 in morning trading. The stock has traded between $2.14 and $4.77 in the last year.