* Aastrom Biosciences Inc., of Ann Arbor, Mich., received two Small Business Innovation Research grants totaling $460,000 from the National Institutes of Health. One grant from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute will fund studies into therapeutic uses of stem cells derived from umbilical cord blood and the other will explore a suicide gene therapy for AIDS in which patients' healthy cells would die when infected with HIV, preventing the virus from replicating.
* Biogen Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., said it will repurchase 2.5 million shares of its common stock over the next two years.
* Medicines Co., of Cambridge, Mass., said Phase II results of Hirulog showed the anticoagulant was more effective than heparin in restoring blood flow following heart attack. The company said the data were published in the Oct. 7 issue of Circulation. Medicines licensed Hirulog from Biogen Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., in March 1997. (See BioWorld Today, March 26, 1997, p. 1.)