* Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc., of New Haven, Conn., said it could receive up to $10 million from Novartis, of Basel, Switzerland, in a licensing agreement for use of Alexion's in vivo gene therapy technology. Alexion said it will work with Novartis' subsidiary, Genetic Therapy Inc., of Gaithersburg, Md. on development of gene therapy products.
* Boston Life Sciences Inc., of Boston, said preclinical studies of its anti-angiogenic factor showed the naturally-occurring human protein inhibited tumor growth in mice. The company said its expects to file an investigational new drug application with the FDA by the end of 1997 to begin clinical trials of the anti-angiogenic factor.
* Gilead Sciences Inc., of Foster City, Calif., began a second Phase III study of its AIDS drug, GS 840 (adefovir dipivoxil), a nucleotide analogue. The study is expected to enroll more than 2,000 patients, who will receive GS 840 alone or in combination with other antiviral drugs. GS 840 is a reverse transcriptase inhibitor also being tested for treatment of hepatitis B and cytomegalovirus. Gilead launched a 400-patient Phase II/III trial in June 1996 of GS 840 for AIDS.
* Procept Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., began a Phase I trial in the U.K. of PRO 2000, a topical microbicide, to protect women from HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. The study will test the safety of the gel in 36 healthy volunteers.
* Vysis Inc., of Downers Grove, Ill., said it granted to the University of Chicago a non-exclusive license to the company's fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) technology for genetic assessments. The university's Center for Medical Genetics and its Hematology and Oncology Cytogenetic Laboratory will use the technology to detect abnormalities in genes and chromosomes. Financial terms were not disclosed.