- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 3, 2006

BLOOMBERG NEWS The top two officials at SFBC International Inc., the drug-testing company at the center of a U.S. Senate probe, quit after investigators sought to interview them. Lisa Krinsky resigned as president and chairman, and Arnold Hantman retired as chief executive officer, the Miami company said yesterday. SFBC’s shares have plunged more than 60 percent since Nov. 1, the day before Bloomberg News reported on deaths and injuries that occurred in experimental drug studies across the U.S. SFBC is trying to regain investor confidence after Miami officials forced SFBC to remove beds in its main trial center because of safety issues, Canadian officials probed a tuberculosis outbreak in a Montreal drug trial, and SFBC hired advisers to “explore strategic alternatives.” The company’s shares rose as much as 21 percent yesterday after the company said Jeffrey McMullen would become chief executive. Mr. McMullen was president and CEO of SFBC’s Pharmanet unit, a clinical trial company purchased in December. Jack Levine, who previously was SFBC’s lead director, was elected chairman of the board of directors, the company said. SFBC shares rose $2.88, or 18 percent, to close at $18.89 on the Nasdaq Stock Market. The changes are “enormously positive for the company,” said Rebecca Jones Kujawa, a Stanford Group analyst in Boca Raton, Fla. “Mr. McMullen is an extremely competent executive. It will take off some of the heat” and help with the probe by Sen. Charles Grassley, the Finance Committee chairman. Mr. Grassley, Iowa Republican, has requested documents from U.S. regulators on inspections of SFBC. Ms. Krinsky, 43, was expected to meet with Mr. Grassley’s staff next Wednesday.

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