RALEIGH … Salix Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:SLXP) lost $5.2 million, or 24 cents per share, on $7.3 million in revenue during the second quarter. These results compare with losses of $3.3 million on $4.2 million in revenue in the same period a year ago.

Losses for the six-month period increased from $7.2 million in 2001 to $9.9 million, as revenues soared by 80 percent, from $7.5 million to $13.5 million in the first half of this year. Revenue has come from sales of Colazal, the company’s first product, which hit the market last year and treats mildly to moderately active ulcerative colitis.

“We believe that today Salix is in its strongest position ever to accomplish its mission to become the leading specialty gastroenterology company in the United States. We are executing our strategy,” Salix President and Chief Executive Carolyn Logan said in a statement.

Approximately 44,000 Colazal prescriptions were written during the second quarter, compared to 34,200 prescriptions during the first quarter and just 11,600 during the second quarter of 2001, Logan said. Based upon current information, Salix estimates that Colazal sales will generate between $30 million and $35 million in revenue this year, she said.

Salix recently signed a licensing agreement with Germany-based Dr. Falk Pharma for another colitis treatment. Chief Financial Officer Adam Derbyshire said the deal is “the first of what we intend to be a number of acquisitions as we work to build the company’s product pipeline.”

Because of added research costs related to the acquisition and clinical trials associated with products Salix has in development, Derbyshire estimates the company will lose $1.15 and $1.35 per share during the course of 2002.

Salix Pharmaceuticals: www.salix.com