MONTREAL, May 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- ProMetic Life Sciences (PLI:TSX) announced today that its subsidiary ProMetic BioSciences Limited (ProMetic) achieved the second milestone of its License Agreement with AM- PHARMA B.V. ProMetic's technology has been licenced to AM-Pharma for use in connection with Alkaline Phosphatase, a proprietary product being developed by AM-Pharma for the treatment of sepsis and septic shock. The objective of this second milestone was to achieve AM-Pharma's performance criteria. The last two milestones relate to the scale-up, commercialization and development of an integrated process for alkaline phosphatase purification using ProMetic technology.
"This is yet another demonstration of ProMetic's ability to develop high- performance purification materials derived from its Mimetic Ligand(TM) platform technology and one of several new affinity products we have developed for our commercial partners over the last 12 months", said Dr. Steve Burton, Executive Vice President and CSO.
AM-Pharma's product has been tested successfully in Phase I and Phase IIa clinical trials. A more elaborate Phase II clinical study in two university- based Dutch Intensive Care Units will be initiated shortly.
About the License Agreement
The License Agreement includes milestone payments to ProMetic representing $700,000 CDN. Prometic will also receive royalties in relation to the sale of alkaline phosphatase manufactured using ProMetic's technology and revenues from the supply of Mimetic Ligand(TM). "Sepsis is a major medical concern which accounts for millions of dollars annually. ProMetic's technology will help address this health problem by providing pure alkaline phosphatase, which has shown great promise as a therapeutic. We are very pleased with this agreement because it contributes to ProMetic's near-term revenue stream based on its enabling technology and provides ProMetic with significant upside potential from royalties on future product sales" commented Pierre Laurin, President and CEO of ProMetic.
Sepsis is a major challenge in medicine. It is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in intensive care units worldwide (Friedman, 1998, Balk, 2000), particularly in elderly, immuno-compromised and critically ill patients. In the US alone, it is estimated that more than 700,000 cases of severe sepsis, hypoperfusion or shock occur per year (Linde-Zwirble, 1999), which when extrapolated to a global population represents several million cases of severe sepsis annually worldwide. Data also shows that sepsis is the leading cause of death in non-coronary ICU patients (Sands 1997), and data collected by the Centers for Disease Control in 1998 shows that it was the 11th leading cause of death overall. The CDC warned that the incidence was increasing, citing the aging US population and the increased prevalence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection as contributing factors. Also, the widespread use of broad-spectrum antibiotics has increased the rates of both antibiotic resistant and nosocomial infections of sepsis. A recent study published in Crit. Care. Med. (2001) Vol. 29, No.7, clearly demonstrates the ongoing increase in instances of these conditions that are frequently fatal and expensive for the healthcare system.
ProMetic Life Sciences Inc. is an international biopharmaceutical company with headquarters in Montreal (Quebec), and additional facilities in the UK and the USA. ProMetic specializes in the research, development, manufacture and marketing of a variety of commercial applications from its proprietary platform technologies, which are used in the development of therapeutics, large-scale purification of biologics and the elimination of pathogens/viruses.
AM-Pharma is focused on the development of novel pharmaceutical compounds, derived from the innate human immune system. The resulting products are intended for the treatment of patients suffering from a variety of serious infectious diseases. Specifically, the company operates in the segments of LPS- mediated diseases and infections of fungal and bacterial origin, offering products that address unmet medical needs. The current lead compound, recombinant alkaline phosphatase, is developed in collaboration with Biozyme Laboratories Ltd. (Blaenavon, UK), a wholly owned subsidiary of Theratase plc (London, UK), a founding investor in AM-Pharma Holding.
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks
and uncertainties, including, but not limited to the Company's ability to
develop, manufacture, and successfully commercialize value-added
pharmaceutical products and to obtain contracts for its products and
services and commercial acceptance of advanced affinity separation
technology. Shareholders are cautioned that these statements are
predictions and these actual events or results may differ materially from
those anticipated in these forward-looking statements.
PROMETIC LIFE SCIENCES INC.