* Abgenix Inc., of Fremont, Calif., which raised $20 million in its July initial public offering (IPO), garnered an additional $3 million as underwriters BancAmerica Robertson Stephens and Lehman Brothers exercised a 375,000-share overallotment option. Abgenix sold a total of 2.875 million shares at $8 per share in the IPO.
* Ariad Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., said the Hoechst-Ariad Genomics Center LLC signed a gene identification and licensing agreement with the Center for the Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, a unit of Harvard University's School of Public Health. The collaborative effort will seek genes involved in atherosclerosis and angiogenesis. The Hoechst-Ariad Genomics Center, also of Cambridge, was created last year as a joint venture between Frankfurt, Germany-based Hoechst Marion Roussel and Ariad. (See BioWorld Today, March 7, 1997, p. 1.)
* Briana Bio-Tech Inc., of Montreal, finalized an agreement with BioChem Pharma Inc., of Laval, Quebec, and Qualia Computing Inc., of Beavercreek, Ohio, to develop and commercialize a breast cancer detection system called Second Look that aids mammogram interpretation. The deal creates a new company — owned 55 percent by BioChem and 45 percent by Briana — that will finance clinical trials of Second Look and the development of any related products. BioChem will provide funding over the next 12 months, with Briana retaining a matching right that could allow it to increase its ownership share to 49 percent. Briana licensed the exclusive rights to Second Look from Qualia in 1997.
* Cell Genesys Inc., of Foster City, Calif., said its preclinical studies have demonstrated the regulation of gene therapy, important in such applications as delivery of the therapeutic protein erythropoietin (EPO), for anemic patients. Following a single gene therapy treatment, levels of EPO were increased or decreased by systematic administration of tetracycline in studies in mice conducted over about 20 weeks. The study was reported in the August issue of Nature Biotechnology.
* Genome Therapeutics Corp., of Waltham, Mass., and Cadus Pharmaceutical Corp., of Tarrytown, N.Y., signed a collaborative research agreement focused on identification and development of novel drug targets. The deal combines Genome Therapeutics' identifying, sequencing and cloning of novel, full-length genes with Cadus' functional genomics and drug discovery assay development. Their collaboration also will make use of Genome Therapeutics' gene expression technologies.* Endorex Corp., of Lake Bluff, Ill., said its oncologics subsidiary, Wisconsin Genetics Inc., signed a research agreement with the University of Wisconsin-Madison to sponsor the identification and preclinical development of new cancer drugs. The compounds, called monoterpenes, will be chemically related to Perillyl alcohol, a cancer drug discovered at the university that was licensed last year to Wisconsin Genetics. Perillyl alcohol and other monoterpenes are plant-derived compounds found in certain fruits and vegetables, and modulate the cellular levels of growth factors and their receptors.
* Genzyme Corp., of Cambridge, Mass., will equip its domestic and international clinical luminary sites with OEC Medical Systems Inc.'s Series 9600 Cardiac mobile fluoroscopic imaging systems. The companies also will co-market technologies for minimally invasive cardiovascular surgery, and Genzyme will incorporate OEC's cardiac imager into relevant training courses. OEC is based in Salt Lake City.