A DOZEN jobs have gone at struggling biotech company Oxford Biomedica, which earlier this year saw its shares crash after a hiccup with a trial of its key cancer drug TroVax.

The redundancies — 15 per cent of the 90-strong workforce — were part of cost savings implemented by the company to allow it to survive through 2010.

Restructuring costs related to the headcount reduction are expected to be less than £100,000, said the company, which expects revenue for the full year in the range of £16-19m, which is an increase of about 140 per cent over 2007.

Chief executive John Dawson, who took over in August following the sudden departure of his predecessor, Mike McDonald, said they were encouraged by the feedback from the US drug regulators on another TroVax study.

He said they were “delighted” that pharmaceutical giant Sanofi-aventis had confirmed its support and, pending regulators’ agreement, its intention to proceed with further trials.

He added: “We are evaluating a number of strategic opportunities that could add new drivers of growth for the company. With our strong financial position and upcoming development milestones, we are well positioned to build the business and create long-term value for shareholders."

The company will now focus development on three projects with greatest potential — TroVax, a treatment for Parkinson's disease called Pro-Savin, and RetinoStat, designed to treat age-related macular degeneration.