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Local Tech Wire

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – Shares in drug development firm plummeted 40 percent Tuesday morning after the company disclosed a drug candidate had failed in a clinical trial.

Icagen closed Monday at 66 cents, but shares fell quickly to 41 cents Tuesday after the markets opened.

A rally did lift Icagen back to 52 cents at the close, down 14 cents, or 21 percent, on the day.

Icagen said a proposed drug, called ICA-105665, targeting epilepsy and pain failed to relieve simulated sunburn pain in 24 patients in a Phase 1B clinical trial.

Another trial is underway for the same compound in patients with photosensitive epilepsy.

“The company currently expects to report results of this second study during the first half of this year,” Icagen said in a statement. “Following the completion of this second study, the company will consider next steps for the development of ICA-105665, including potentially discussing with the (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) the testing of the compound at higher doses than that utilized in the pain study.”