TUBINGEN, GERMANY--(Marketwire - January 05, 2009) -
* CureVac's RNActive® mRNA vaccine CV9103 to treat prostate cancer
is approved for clinical studies in the US
* First US clinical trial expected to begin in March 2009
* First results expected in H1 2010
Tuebingen (Germany), January 5, 2009. CureVac GmbH today announced
that it has received approval for its Investigational New Drug (IND)
application with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to begin a
Phase I/IIa clinical study with CV9103, a RNActive® - derived mRNA
(messenger RNA) vaccine. This mRNA vaccine will be tested in patients
with hormone-refractory metastatic prostate cancer.
CV9103 is the most advanced candidate in CureVac's vaccine pipeline
of RNActive®-derived molecules for active immunotherapy of cancer.
The vaccine is comprised of modified long chain mRNA molecules coding
for four different antigens expressed by prostate cancer cells. The
Phase I/IIa trial is designed to assess the safety, tolerability and
biological activity of the vaccine. CureVac expects to start the
treatment of the first patient in March 2009. First results from the
Phase I/IIa trial are expected by H1 2010.
Thomas Lander, M.D., Managing Director and Chief Medical Officer of
CureVac, commented: "Only shortly after receiving the approval of
clinical development in the EU a few weeks ago, we are now looking
forward to also starting the first Phase I/IIa trial in the US.
CV9103 is the first mRNA-based vaccine to enter clinical trials in
prostate cancer. This IND approval is a significant milestone in our
goal of establishing a novel immunotherapy for the treatment of
"Without doubt, the North American market is strategically and
commercially a very important area also for us. We are very pleased
to work with Johannes Vieweg and his team from the Urology Clinic,
Gainesville, University of Florida. Johannes and his group are among
the most experienced teams in active immunotherapy," added Thomas
About CureVac's mRNA Technology Platforms
Messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) is a molecular template for protein
synthesis. It delivers the information encoded by genes from DNA to
ribosomes where the information is translated into individual
proteins. Natural RNA is an unstable biomolecule that is rapidly
digested in the human body. As a result, its potential role as a
therapeutic was overlooked for decades.
CureVac has successfully demonstrated that it is possible to modify
mRNA for therapeutic purposes while maintaining its full
physiological properties. CureVac's RNActive® - derived customized
mRNA molecules are used to encode different tumour-associated
antigens which are expressed by different cells in the upper layers
of the skin. The immune system recognizes these antigens on
presentation to dendritic cells and react by forming both
antigen-specific T-cells and humoral antibodies.
Building on its unique expertise from many years of RNA research,
molecular design and GMP-approved RNA production CureVac has
established several proprietary technologies, namely:
* RNActive® to deliver modified and formulated mRNA molecules with
enhanced translational potency and self-adjuvanting activity
* RNAdjuvant® as immune stimulant in different kinds of vaccines
* PUREmessenger® for the GMP-production of full-length mRNA.
The combination of these technology platforms enables the Company to
deliver large amounts of mRNA for a broad range of therapeutic
CureVac GmbH is a biopharmaceutical company focusing on the
therapeutic potential of messenger RNA (mRNA). CureVac's lead program
is focusing on the development of tumour vaccines for the treatment
of prostate cancer and non-small cell lung cancer.
CureVac, a spin-off from the Tuebingen University, Germany, was
established in December 2000 and is headquartered in Tuebingen. Since
its inception, the Company has raised approximately EUR 38 million.
The main investor is dievini Hopp BioTech holding GmbH&Co. KG.
RNActive®, RNAdjuvant®, PUREmessenger® are registered trademarks of
Marijke Barner, PhD
T +49 (0) 70 71.92 0 53-61
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MC Services AG
T +49 (0) 89.210 228 20
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