Acceleron expands facilities, workforce

Here's some refreshing news: instead of cutting jobs like so many other biotechs, Cambridge, MA-based Acceleron announced that it will increase its workforce by more than 50 percent this year "to support the continuing growth of its R&D and manufacturing activities." The company says it's "hiring staff across essentially all functions." Acceleron has also expanded to a third lab in the Cambridge area and increased its facility space by 25 percent.

Acceleron has gained notoriety in recent years for its work on therapies that regulate body tissues and systems. Company execs often show a picture of the Belgian blue (photo), a white bull with enormous muscles that are the result of a genetic defect. These genetic anomalies could be used to repair the physical damage of certain muscle-wasting diseases. Its lead program, ACE-011 is currently in Phase II studies in multiple myeloma patients with osteolytic bone disease. 

"Even during the current economic challenges, Acceleron Pharma demonstrates the message of hope that the biotechnology industry can provide to the Massachusetts economy and to patients in need of breakthrough therapies," said Robert K. Coughlin, MBC President and CEO. "Acceleron has grown by more than 50 percent in each year since the Company was founded in 2004 and we expect this rate of growth to continue throughout 2009," added Acceleron founder and CEO John Knopf.

- see Acceleron's release