Drugmaker SciClone Pharmaceuticals Inc said it would cut about 17 percent of its U.S.-based jobs, mostly in research and development, following its decision to drop the development of its cancer drug earlier this month.

On Oct. 2, the company said it discontinued the development of its experimental pancreatic cancer drug after a recommendation by a data safety monitoring committee.

SciClone said it expects to record a charge of about $0.3 million, which includes severance and other expenses associated with the workforce reduction.

The restructuring is expected to be complete in the fourth quarter, the company said in a statement.

The company has lately come to prominence as it is trying to get its hepatitis B treatment Zadaxin to show that it can boost the effectiveness of H1N1 flu vaccines now being developed by other companies.

SciClone sells Zadaxin, a drug approved in China and other overseas markets, to treat hepatitis B infections and to boost the immune systems of other patients, including those with liver cancer.

Shares of the company closed at $2.52 Tuesday on Nasdaq. (Reporting by Esha Dey in Bangalore; Editing by Himani Sarkar)