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Xantos Biomedicine AG And Atugen AG Collaborate To Validate Cancer Target
10/19/2005 5:12:43 PM
Munich, Germany, April 15, 2005 - Xantos Biomedicine AG announced that it has signed a collaboration agreement with Atugen AG, Berlin, Germany, to use atuRNAi, Atugen’s proprietary siRNA (short-interfering RNA) compounds, to validate one of Xantos' angiogenic targets in animal studies. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Xantos has used XantoScreen technology to discover novel proteins that mediate proliferation of vascular endothelial cells, which potentially play a role in angiogenesis of tumours. Newly identified secreted proteins out of this screen have provided targets for inhibitory approaches aimed at depriving tumour cells from nutrients and oxygen. Simultaneously, such proteins may also serve as leads for pro-angiogenic therapeutic applications.
Atugen recently carried out proof-of-concept studies in a mouse diabetes model, using its gene silencing atuRNAi molecules in combination with its proprietary delivery technology, to successfully down regulate a target that plays a significant role in regulating glucose metabolism. This approach has now been successfully applied to validate and modulate disease targets in liver diseases and several animal models for cancer. Atugen is currently pursuing a program to develop siRNA therapeutics to treat advanced cancer and other diseases.
Stephan Wehselau, CEO at Xantos Biomedicine says, "We are impressed with Atugen’s in vivo RNAi approach and renowned expertise in oncology and validation of cancer targets. We are delighted to be collaborating with them."
"We are very pleased to collaborate with Xantos and to contribute to the validation and selection of therapeutically relevant cancer targets for further product development," said Dr. Klaus Giese, CSO, "This collaboration demonstrates the value of our atuRNAi approach and novel delivery system for validating targets in vivo."
About Xantos Biomedicine AG - www.xantos.de
Xantos Biomedicine AG is a functional biology and drug discovery company that is focusing on the identification and validation of disease relevant human genes. Studies on biological functions are carried out rapidly by screening for phenotypic changes caused by increase of gene function in mammalian cell systems. For this Xantos has established the proprietary high-throughput, fully automated cellular gene-transfection and assay system XantoScreen that is used for several functional applications:
- Molecular drug profiling
- Target / pathway profiling
- Target and protein identification and
- Lead identification
XantoScreen enables the fully automated and standardized functional analysis of 100,000 to 300,000 genes per month in cell systems. Xantos has one of the world's largest full-length human cDNA collections (35,000 clones), several high quality cDNA libraries from various human tissues and several cell systems available for high throughput analysis. The Company uses its technology for its own discovery programs in cancer and metabolic diseases. Xantos focuses on the development of therapeutics based on secreted proteins involved in angiogenesis of cancer cells, in differentiation of fat cells and in the induction of insulin resistance. Xantos has already identified several disease relevant new targets and proteins and is searching for collaboration partners. Xantos is offering its technology, the human cDNA collections, libraries and functional cell assay systems on a fee-for-service basis for technology-driven interactions.
About Atugen AG - www.atugen.com
Atugen, the RNAi Therapeutics Company, is a biopharmaceutical company with core competence in functional gene silencing. The company has developed stabilized, proprietary siRNA molecules (atuRNAi) for use in animals and humans. Several proof-of-concept studies in animals have shown that atuRNAi can be used to successfully treat cancer and other diseases, either alone or in combination with custom-tailored delivery vehicles. The strategic focus of the company is now to take its RNAi technology into the clinic in advanced cancer indications. In other fields such as ophthalmology, Atugen has established partnerships that can accelerate clinical development of atuRNAi. Atugen is looking for additional strategic alliances to develop RNAi therapeutics.
For further information please contact:
Xantos Biomedicine AG
Tel: +49 89 899 59 509
Fax: +49 89 899 59 420
International/English language media enquiries:
Eileen Paul, Northbank Communications
Tel: +44 (0) 1260 296500
Mobile: +44 (0) 7793630240
German media enquiries:
Marc Egelhofer, Northbank Communications
Tel: +44 (0) 1260 296500
Mobile: +49 (0) 1788726392