updated 5/10/2010 10:38:44 AM ET 2010-05-10T14:38:44

Achillion Pharmaceuticals Inc. on Monday reported a smaller first-quarter loss as revenue climbed while research and development expenses fell.

The New Haven, Conn., company said it lost $5.6 million, or 16 cents per share, in the three months that ended March 31. That compares with a loss of $6.7 million, or 25 cents per share, in the first quarter of 2009.

Achillion brought in $74,000 in revenue in the first quarter, compared with negative revenue of $293,000 in last year's first quarter. The company said the 2009 amount reflected an imbalance in the sum billed by Gilead Sciences to Achillion under a partnership agreement, versus what Achillion billed to Gilead.

Achillion said its research and development expenses fell 16 percent in the quarter to about $4 million. Total operating expenses dropped 11 percent to $5.6 million.

The results topped the average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters, who had expected a loss of 20 cents per share on about $60,000 in revenue.

Shares fell 12 cents, or 5.2 percent, to $2.17 in morning trading.

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