La Jolla Pharmaceuticals Lays Off Staff, Looks To Sell Firm

San Diego-based La Jolla Pharmaceutical Company has laid of a "substantial" number of the firm's personnel, and is looking to either shut down the business or sell the company, the firm said Thursday, after a failure of the firm's Phase 3 trials. According to the firm, the "substantial reduction in personnel" comes after negative results of the firm's Riquent Phase 3 interim efficacy analysis. Riquent was La Jolla's lead compound, and was targeted at treating lupus renal disease by preventing or delaying renal flares, the leading cause of sickness and death of lupus patients. The firm did not disclose how many employees were affected by the move, but said it has pared its staff to the "minimum necessary to carry out basic operations."