Celgene Pays Agios $20M, Lycera Adds Cambridge CEO, Getinge Buys Atrium Medical, & More Boston-Area Life Sciences News

Xconomy Boston — 

We saw a mix of personnel, drug partnership, and acquisition news from New England’s life sciences players this week.

—Atrium Medical, a Hudson, NH-based developer of cardiology and radiology medical devices, is getting acquired by the Swedish firm, Getinge Group, for $680 million. Atrium will act as an independent business unit of the Getinge subsidiary Maquet Cardiovascular.

—Cambridge, MA-based Agios Pharmaceuticals, a developer of tumor-starving drugs, took in another $20 million for extending an exclusive drug collaboration it inked with Celgene last year. Celgene could also pay up to $120 million in milestones for each drug it licenses for its own internal pipeline and further development. That all comes on top of the $130 million Agios earned in upfront payment in April 2010.

—Xconomy national biotech editor Luke Timmerman moderated a live chat on Twitter with John Maraganore, CEO of Cambridge-based Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, on the subejct of RNA interference. “RNAi vs iPhone, RNAi better for patients” is among Maraganore’s pithy tweets that resulted.

—Michigan-based biopharmaceutical company Lycera announced it had hired new CEO Kathleen Metters, who will primarily work out of Cambridge. Metters, a Merck veteran, will oversee Lycera as it enters clinical trials of its drugs for treating autoimmune disease, which will likely begin in 2012.