Shares of ChromaVision Medical Systems Inc. rose 34% after the money-losing medical device company won regulatory clearance to sell its computer-based system to help physicians detect early-stage cancer. Shares of the San Juan Capistrano-based company rose $3.88 to close at $15.13 on Nasdaq. The approval from the Food and Drug Administration allows ChromaVision to market the system, which it says can detect and diagnose early-stage cancer cells as well as infectious diseases and genetic conditions. Analysts say the company has a $300-million market for its diagnostic products. ChromaVision plans five clinical trials this year, including tests to detect breast, bone and lymph node cancer. Last year, its first as a public company, ChromaVision reported a loss of $8 million, or 47 cents a share. Analysts expect it to lose 58 cents this year but said it could post its first profit in 2000 if the cancer-detection system is successful.
FDA Approval Boosts ChromaVision Stock