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Local Tech Wire

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Targacept (NASDAQ: TRGT), the drug-developer focused on central nervous system problems with a new class of drugs called NNRs, moved into the black with a third-quarter profit of 5 cents a share.

The company reported net income of $1.3 million in the three months that ended Sept. 30, compared with a loss of $7.6 million in the same quarter of 2008.

The company remained in the red for the fiscal year-to-date, with a $13 million loss, but it was running ahead of the $20.2 million it lost in the first three quarters of 2008.

Targacept lost 31 cents a share in the third quarter last year. This year’s second quarter resulted in a 39-cent loss.

The company’s TC-5214 finished Phase 2b trials during the quarter. Targacept also has partnerships with AstraZeneca for several other drugs.

"Targacept also now expects that its current cash resources will be sufficient to meet its operating requirements at least through the first half of 2012, based on current operating plans and assuming that funds required for Phase 3 clinical development of TC-5214 will be secured through a potential future strategic alliance, collaboration, licensing or other arrangement," the company’s quarterly report stated.

"The third quarter was unquestionably significant for Targacept, with the announcements of our successful Phase 2b trial of TC-5214 in MDD and AstraZeneca’s decision to conduct further development of AZD3480 for ADHD. These outcomes highlight the breadth of our pipeline of NNR therapeutics and reinforce our leadership position in the NNR space,” J. Donald deBethizy, president and chief executive officer, said.