Ariad and Infinity to Reveal Data at ASCO, Excelimmune Gets $10.5M, Hologic Buys TCT, & More Boston-Area Life Sciences News

Xconomy Boston — 

You wouldn’t know we had a holiday this week, with the rate Boston life sciences companies are pumping out news. They’ve inked partnerships, announced fundings, made acquisitions, and are gearing up for a big medical convention this weekend.

—Cambridge, MA-based Ariad Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: ARIA) will reveal data from a clinical trial of its drug ridaforolimus to an eager audience at next week’s American Society of Clinical Oncology’s (ASCO) annual meeting in Chicago, Luke wrote. The drug was developed in a collaboration with Merck and is designed to block a protein that causes tumor growth.

—Woburn, MA-based drug developer Excelimmune said it nabbed $10.5 million in Series B financing, from new and previous individual backers. The money will help advance Staphguard, the company’s treatment for Staph infections resistant to methicillin.

—Aveo Pharmaceuticals of Cambridge said it entered into a partnership with Johnson & Johnson’s (NYSE: JNJCentocor Ortho Biotech unit to work together on Aveo’s antibodies targeting a receptor involved in tumor growth. Aveo (NASDAQ: AVEO) received $15 million upfront for this, and could get $540 million more down the road in milestones.

—Cambridge-based Dossia, a nonprofit consortium offering online medical records to employees of its member companies, inked a partnership this spring with Denver-based Health Language. Dossia CEO Michael Critelli says the collaboration will help translate the medical jargon in the clinical records into plain English for patients to better understand and manage their care.

—Luke took a look at Cambridge-based Infinity Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: INFI) as it readies itself for a presentation at ASCO. The drug developer will reveal data from the first 16 months of a trial of its new drug candidate for pancreatic cancer, IPI-926.

—My colleague Arlene wrote about Newton, MA-based NeuroHealing, a virtual biotech company that looks for already approved drugs and reformulates them to treat central nervous system disorders. The company has been getting grants and other investments to fund the development of its drugs for treating patients with traumatic brain injuries, Parkinson’s disease, and premature ejaculation.

Lumicell Diagnostics, a Waltham, MA-based developer of a cancer diagnostic device, took in $2.7 million in equity-based funding.

—Bedford, MA-based diagnostic and medical imaging firm Hologic (NASDAQ: HOLX) announced it had acquired TCT International, a China-based distributor of medical products, for $135 million in cash.