Fisons announced three drug development and marketing deals yesterday in the last major plank of its defence to the pounds 1.7bn bid from Rhone-Poulenc Rorer. The group is linking with Ciba-Geigy to develop a new inhaled anti- asthma treatment, Magainin Pharmaceuticals of the US for a cystic fibrosis antibiotic and 3M to co-promote a new "green" aerosol inhaler. Fisons also forecast profits of pounds 100m this year from the pharmaceuticals division, after pounds 18m of non-recurring r&d spending, and a final dividend of 3p to make a total of 5p. RPR dismissed the news, saying the deals would not do much for Fisons' earnings or sales before the turn of the century. Comment page 23.
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Fisons unveils deals in bid battle defence