Alder Biopharmaceuticals, the Bothell, WA-based developer of targeted antibody drugs against cancer and inflammation, said today its lead product candidate was effective against anemia for more than half of advanced cancer patients in a trial. The study, of 124 patients, randomly assigned patients to take Alder’s ALD518 or a placebo. About 58 percent of patients who got the Alder drug saw their levels of hemoglobin—a protein that carries oxygen in the blood—rise from anemic levels to a more normal state, researchers said. Patients who got the Alder drug were also able to maintain more of their body weight than those on placebo. Detailed results were presented today at the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting. I described this unusual strategy, of fighting cancer by tamping down inflammation, in a feature story last month.