Bio Roundup: Senate Drama, A.I. Stories, Data Dives, Shkreli & More

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brentuximab vedontin, combined with chemotherapy, met its Phase 3 goal of improving survival in patients with the most common form of Hodgkin lymphoma.

—A topical pain drug from Xenon Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: XENE) failed a Phase 2 study, leaving the Burnaby, BC biotech to shift to earlier-stage neurology compounds in its pipeline.


—Cancer drug developer Mersana Therapeutics of Cambridge, MA, held an IPO that raised $75 million and could bring in up to $11.25 million more. It was quietly a big week for biotech IPOs: Aileron Therapeutics, Dova Pharmaceuticals, and micro-cap Avenue Therapeutics all went public, as well.

Atlas Venture unveiled a $350 million fund, the Cambridge firm’s eleventh, which it plans to use to invest in more seed-stage biotech startups.

—Dimension Therapeutics of Cambridge said it would lay off a quarter of staff by end of year. Poor Phase 1/2 results from its experimental gene therapy for hemophilia B cut its share price in half five months ago, and the firm ended work on the program last month.

—Cambridge-based LogicBio reeled in a $45 million Series B round as it works toward clinical trials for gene therapies that could treat rare pediatric liver diseases.

—Vivace Therapeutics closed a $25 million Series B round that the San Mateo, CA-based company will use to continue development of new cancer drugs.


—Sarepta Therapeutics (NASDAQ: SRPT) named Douglas Ingram its new CEO, its third in three years. Ingram, a former Allergan executive, replaces Ed Kaye, who announced in April his plan to leave. Kaye led Sarepta to a controversial approval last year of its Duchenne muscular dystrophy drug Exondys 51, which insurers have been slow to cover.

—Cambridge-based RaNA Therapeutics renamed itself Translate Bio.

—Dragonfly Therapeutics, also of Cambridge, hired Nicolai Wagtmann away from Innate Pharma to be its new chief scientific officer.

—At Regenacy Pharmaceuticals, Simon Jones was promoted to CEO, succeeding Walter Ogier, who remains on the Boston company’s board of directors.

Photo of U.S. Capitol by Kevin Dooley via a Creative Commons 2.0 license.

Frank Vinluan contributed to this report.

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