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Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. (SGMO) Announces Achievement of Key Milestone in Cell Engineering Agreement With Genentech, Inc. (DNA)


6/29/2009 8:49:25 AM

RICHMOND, Calif., June 29 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. today announced that a key research milestone has been achieved in its Research and License Agreement with Genentech, Inc., a wholly-owned member of the Roche Group, for the generation of cell lines with novel characteristics for pharmaceutical protein production purposes using Sangamo's proprietary zinc finger DNA-binding protein nuclease (ZFN) technology. Genentech scientists demonstrated the successful knockout of two preselected genes in a Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell line. The milestone achievement triggered a payment from Genentech to Sangamo.

"Achievement of this milestone demonstrates the progress under our agreement with Genentech," said Edward Lanphier, Sangamo's president and chief executive officer. "Our ZFN technology is currently being used by major players in pharmaceutical protein production to streamline the process of cell line production, increase the yield and improve the characteristics of biologic drugs, such as antibodies, that are manufactured in mammalian cells."

"Our ZFNs provide the gold standard technology for specifically editing target genes in mammalian cells," stated Philip Gregory, D. Phil., Sangamo's vice president of research. "Moreover, the efficiency of this approach obviates the need for selection markers, thereby enabling the rapid generation of cell lines in which multiple genes have been knocked out. Our proven ability to quickly and selectively knock out multiple genes in the same cell line creates endless possibilities for biopharmaceutical companies to improve their manufacturing capability."

About Sangamo

Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. is focused on researching and developing zinc finger DNA-binding protein (ZFP) technology for therapeutic gene regulation and modification. By engineering ZFPs that recognize a specific DNA sequence Sangamo has created ZFP transcription factors (ZFP TF(TM)) that can control gene expression and, consequently, cell function. Sangamo is also developing sequence-specific ZFP Nucleases (ZFN(TM)) for gene modification. The most advanced ZFP Therapeutic(TM) development program is currently in Phase 2 clinical trials for evaluation of safety and clinical effect in patients with diabetic neuropathy and ALS. Sangamo also has a Phase 1 clinical trial to evaluate safety and clinical effect of a ZFP Therapeutic for the treatment of HIV/AIDS. Other therapeutic development programs are focused on cancer, neuropathic pain, nerve regeneration, Parkinson's disease and monogenic diseases. Sangamo has established strategic partnerships with companies in non-therapeutic applications of its ZFP Technology, including Dow AgroSciences, Sigma-Aldrich Corporation Genentech and Pfizer. For more information about Sangamo and the ZFP Technology, visit www.sangamo.com.

This press release may contain forward-looking statements based on Sangamo's current expectations. These forward-looking statements include, without limitation, references to the research and development of novel ZFP TFs and ZFNs, strategic relationship with collaborators and achievement of research milestones, and research applications of Sangamo's ZFP technology platform. Actual results may differ materially from these forward-looking statements due to a number of factors, including technological challenges, the ability of Sangamo and its collaborators to develop commercially viable products and technological developments by our competitors. See the company's SEC filings, and in particular, the risk factors described in the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K and its most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q. Sangamo assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking information contained in this press release.

CONTACT: Elizabeth Wolffe, Ph.D., of Sangamo BioSciences, Inc.,
+1-510-970-6000, Ext. 271, ewolffe@sangamo.com

Web site: http://www.sangamo.com/



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