* Boston Life Sciences Inc., of Boston, has begun a preclinical development program for a newly synthesized, second-generation technetium-based compound, designated O-1506. The compound differs from Altropane, the company's diagnostic agent for Parkinson's disease, in structure and in the advantageous substitution of technetium as the radio-ligand.
* CytoLogix Corp., of Cambridge, Mass., completed a second round of venture capital financing, raising $5.4 million. CytoLogix develops technology for slide-based cellular diagnostics.
* LXR Biotechnology Inc., of Richmond, Calif., said it plans to begin extended preclinical studies of LXR1035, its heart-attack compound, starting in January 1999. In vitro studies with a new analog of the compound, Elirex, for the protection of cultured cells, including heart muscle cells, showed the compound was 10 to 100 times more potent than the original compound, and its composition is much simpler. Preclinical studies of the new compound will begin shortly.
* Medarex Inc., of Annandale, N.J., said continuing Phase II clinical trials have shown the company's anti-HER-2 cancer product, MDX-210, improved prostate specific antigen (PSA) levels and quality of life in a second group of late-stage cancer patients who had failed all standard treatments. The study incorporates a revised dosing schedule, compared to the one used in a Phase II trial reported in May 1998. In the more recent study, 13 of 20 refractory prostate cancer patients showed a reduction of PSA serum levels.
* Sangamo Biosciences Inc., of Point Richmond, Calif., signed a collaborative research agreement with Bayer Corp., of Leverkusen, Germany. Under the agreement, Sangamo will provide specific Universal GeneTools to Bayer for evaluation purposes, in order for Bayer to determine whether to enter into a broader agreement and use the technology as part of its efforts for target identification and validation. Financial terms were not disclosed.