Rumors of impending layoffs began swirling around the Langford division of Cyanamid Canada Inc. in Guelph, Ontario, last July. As molecular microbiologist Lori L. Burrows recalls it, the Toronto-area veterinary vaccine manufacturer was a small pawn in a battle among three pharmaceutical titans.

At first it seemed as if diplomacy would avert a bloodletting: Langford's parent company, American Cyanamid Co. of Princeton, N.J., planned to swap its human pharmaceuticals subsidiaries to SmithKline Beecham, Philadelphia, in return for Smith-Kline's animal-health interests. This apparently didn't sit well with a third firm, American Home Products Corp. of New York. Fearing intensified competition, American Home Products executed a hostile acquisition of American Cyanamid before the SmithKline deal could be finalized.

LOOKING AHEAD: Despite current industry difficulties, researchers may take solace in the fact that the future still looks strong in biotechnology, says BIO president Carl B. Feldbaum.
The very real concern for Burrows...

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