San Diego firm's future hinges on the success of a serendipitously wrought treatment for a variety of genetic diseases
Until March of this year, no one paid much mind to Wick Goodspeed, president and CEO of Vical Inc. With a staff of 22 scientists, his three-year-old biotechnology company in San Diego was just another startup hoping to cash in on the $2 billion-plus markets for innovative drug design and drug delivery methodologies.

Then serendipity stepped in. While looking for a new way to deliver drugs to specific parts of the body, University of Wisconsin scientists collaborating with Vical stumbled on a technique that may provide an approach to treating genetic diseases that surpasses other approaches--gene therapy, especially--that currently are being developed. The results of the company's research were published last March in Science (247:1465-8, March 23, 1990).

Vical Inc., of San Diego, Calif., was founded in 1987 to...

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