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The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Release: Deal Announced Today Between Celgene Corporation (CELG) and Epizyme, an LLS-partner, Will Help Advance a Therapy for Patients with Mixed Lineage Leukemia


4/27/2012 9:16:38 AM

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., April 26, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Thanks to funding from The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), Epizyme has been advancing DOT1L, a targeted histone methyltransferase inhibitor (HMTi) as a personalized therapeutic for patients with mixed lineage leukemia (MLL).

LLS has committed to providing up to $7.5 million in milestone-based funding to Epizyme to support the program through a Phase 1 clinical trial. Epizyme's partnership with Celgene, announced today, will be a tremendous shot in the arm to the advancement of this novel therapy for patients with MLL, a devastating acute leukemia that affects both pediatric and adult patients.

"LLS's goal in establishing its collaboration with Epizyme last June was to help accelerate a promising therapy for patients with a clear unmet need," said LLS Chief Mission Officer Louis DeGennaro, Ph.D. "Celgene brings a track record of successful drug development to the table and today's announcement gives us great confidence that the full impact of this promising research will be met. LLS's goal is to bridge the drug development gap and bring promising therapies to the next level of funding, and today's news is a perfect example of this goal in action."

Earlier this year, Celgene Corporation acquired another LLS-partner, Avila Therapeutics. With LLS funding, Avila has been testing AVL-292, a highly selective Bruton's tyrosine kinsase (Btk) inhibitor for patients with B-cell blood cancers in Phase I clinical trials.

About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society ® (LLS) is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.

Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.LLS.org or contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET. www.lls.org.

Andrea Greif
(914) 821-8958
andrea.greif@lls.org

SOURCE The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society



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