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Neurocrine 4Q profit jumps due to collaboration

SAN DIEGO (AP) -- Neurocrine Biosciences Inc.'s fourth-quarter earnings swelled, as the drug developer brought in more revenue from its collaboration on elagolix, an experimental treatment for endometriosis pain.

The San Diego company, which has no products on the market, earned $9.5 million, or 14 cents per share, in the three months that ended Dec. 31. That compares to net income of $1.3 million, or 2 cents per share, in the final quarter of 2011.

Revenue nearly doubled to $21.9 million.

Analysts expected, on average, a loss of 8 cents per share on $9.1 million in revenue.

Aside from endometriosis, Neurocrine also is developing potential treatments for uterine fibroids, stress-related disorders, pain, diabetes and insomnia.

Elagolix is the most advanced product in its pipeline of drugs under development. Abbott Laboratories spinoff AbbVie Inc. is conducting a late-stage study of the drug as a possible endometriosis treatment, and it also is being studied in a mid-stage trial as a uterine fibroids treatment.

Neurocrine said research and development costs climbed 14 percent in the quarter to $9.1 million, and general and administrative expenses rose as well.

For the full year, Neurocrine earned $5 million, or 8 cents per share, on revenue of $53.1 million.

Looking ahead, the company expects a loss of between 75 cents and 83 cents per share in 2013. Analysts forecast, on average, a loss of 63 cents per share.

Company shares climbed more than 6 percent, or 66 cents, to $10.89 Friday in midday trading, while the Nasdaq exchange rose less than 1 percent.

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