AUSTIN, Texas, Dec. 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- A patent that covers an important class of replicating adenoviruses relating to Introgen Therapeutics' anti-cancer product candidate INGN 007 (VRX 007) has been issued and exclusively sub-licensed to Introgen, the company announced today. The United States patent, U.S. 6,627,190, emanates from research performed at VirRx, Inc. and Saint Louis University under the direction of Dr. William S.M. Wold, one of the world's leaders in replicating oncolytic virus technology. Introgen and VirRx are collaborating on new therapies for cancer and other diseases. VirRx, LLC was founded by Dr. Wold.
INGN 007 is an oncolytic virus product that over-expresses the ADP gene, the protein responsible for the rapid disruption (oncolysis) of tumor cells and, hence, is an important therapeutic activity of oncolytic viruses. Oncolytic viruses are viruses that kill cancer cells by replicating at high levels and cause a cancer cell to break apart. In animal models, INGN 007 has demonstrated that it saturates the entire tumor treated and has shown it can eradicate cancer. Introgen and VirRx initiated their collaboration in order to develop a series of potential products emanating from VirRx and the Wold laboratory. Preclinical testing of INGN 007 is now being completed and the product is being readied for clinical development.
Dr. Wold, professor and chairman of the department of molecular microbiology and president and CEO of VirRx, LLC said, "Our collaboration with Introgen has resulted in the pre-clinical development of an active anti-cancer product that we are eager to introduce into the clinic to further develop the technology. This patent demonstrates our innovation and the novelty of our approach."
Dr. David Parker, Introgen's vice president of intellectual property, said, "This patent represents an important element in our development of a strong oncolytic virus portfolio that will focus on the use of the ADP gene in cancer therapy."
Introgen is a leading developer of biopharmaceutical products which use non-integrating genes to produce a therapeutic protein to treat cancer and other diseases. Introgen maintains integrated research, development, manufacturing, clinical and regulatory departments and operates a commercial- scale, CGMP manufacturing facility.
About VirRx, Inc.
VirRx, Inc. is a biotechnology company with a primary focus in cancer gene therapy. Its broad mission is to develop, characterize, and implement genetically modified oncolytic adenoviruses for use in treating human cancer.
Certain statements in this press release that are not strictly historical may be "forward-looking" statements, which are based on current expectations and entail various risks and uncertainties. Such forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, those relating to Introgen's future success with development of INGN 007 (VRX 007) for cancer and other diseases. There can be no assurance that Introgen will be able to commercially develop gene- based drugs, that necessary regulatory approvals will be obtained or that any clinical trials or studies undertaken will be successful or that the proposed treatments will prove to be safe and/or effective. The actual results may differ from those described in this press release due to risks and uncertainties that exist in Introgen's operations and business environment, including, but without limitation, Introgen's stage of product development and the limited experience in the development of gene-based drugs in general, Introgen's dependence upon proprietary technology and current competition, history of operating losses and accumulated deficits, reliance on collaborative relationships, and uncertainties related to clinical trials, the safety and efficacy of Introgen's product candidates, the ability to obtain the appropriate regulatory approvals, patent protection and market acceptance, as well as other risks detailed from time to time in Introgen's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its annual report on Form 10-K filed on March 31, 2003 and its quarterly report on Form 10-Q filed on November 14, 2003, and its prospectus supplement filed with the SEC pursuant to Rule 424(b)(2) on November 26, 2003. Introgen undertakes no obligation to publicly release the results of any revisions to any forward-looking statements that reflect events or circumstances arising after the date hereof.
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Introgen Therapeutics, Inc.
C. Channing Burke
(512) 708 9310 Ext. 322
Introgen Therapeutics, Inc.