Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. Announces Presentation At American Heart Association Meeting
RICHMOND, Calif., Nov. 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. today announced that data from its program to develop a ZFP Therapeutic(TM) for congestive heart failure (CHF) were presented at the Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association (AHA) on November 16, 2005, in Dallas, Texas. Sangamo's collaborator Frank Giordano, M.D., Associate Professor of Cardiology at Yale University School of Medicine, presented the data in the Gene Expression/Molecular Biology II session in which he also served as co-moderator.
The data presented demonstrate that Sangamo has designed zinc finger DNA- binding protein transcription factors (ZFP TF(TM)) that repress the expression of the phospholamban (PLN) in human cells and in rat cardiomyocytes with singular specificity. When administered directly into the heart of adult rats a ZFP TF PLN repressor was shown to improve cellular calcium flux and enhance both the rate and extent of relaxation and contraction of the heart muscle cells. Moreover, in a rat model of heart failure, treatment with Sangamo's ZFP TF PLN repressor demonstrated improved contractility and hemodynamics or blood movement into and out of the heart.
"We are very excited by these data," said Dr.Giordano. "PLN is a critical regulator of cardiac homeostasis and muscle contractility and has been well- validated in a number of animal models as a target for congestive heart failure. However, the conventional approach of developing small molecule antagonists of PLN has proven to be very difficult. Sangamo's technology provides a novel approach which has the potential to address the molecular root of the disease and may provide improvement in contractility in failing hearts regardless of the origin of the disease."
"Heart failure affects more than five million people and is associated with more than 300,000 deaths each year," said Edward Lanphier, Sangamo's president and CEO. "The cost of medical care, primarily resulting from hospitalization, is estimated to exceed $19 billion annually. The current standard of care aims at increasing the efficiency of the weakened heart. Treatments to increase cardiac contractility are complicated by side effects of arrhythmias that increase morbidity and limit their use. We believe that our approach to develop a therapeutic that directly decreases the expression of PLN in the heart provides a new way to address this significant problem. We are currently expanding these studies and investigating different delivery options for this potential new therapeutic."
In congestive heart failure, the heart's ability to pump is decreased leaving it unable to circulate enough blood to meet the body's needs. CHF is often caused by some other heart disease or condition that progressively damages the heart and is more common as people grow older. It can lead to degeneration of health, stamina and body condition and can be life- threatening. Once severe symptoms develop, if left untreated, the five-year survival rate is 25 to 50 percent -- worse than the survival rates for many cancers.
Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. is focused on the research and development of novel DNA-binding proteins for therapeutic gene regulation and modification. The most advanced ZFP Therapeutic(TM) development programs are currently in Phase I clinical trials for evaluation of safety in patients with diabetic neuropathy and peripheral artery disease. Other therapeutic development programs are focused on macular degeneration, ischemic heart disease, congestive heart failure, neuropathic pain, and infectious and monogenic diseases. Sangamo's core competencies enable the engineering of a class of DNA-binding proteins known as zinc finger DNA-binding proteins (ZFPs). 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 therapeutic gene modification as a treatment for a variety of monogenic diseases, such as sickle cell anemia, and for infectious diseases, such as HIV. Sangamo has established several Enabling Technology Agreements with companies to apply its ZFP Technology to enhance the production of protein pharmaceuticals. In addition, Sangamo has a broad exclusive agreement with Dow AgroSciences, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Company, for the application of ZFP TFs and ZFNs in plant agriculture. For more information about Sangamo, visit the company's web site at 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 and therapeutic 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, Sangamo's ability 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 10-Q. Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking information contained in this press release.Sangamo BioSciences, Inc.
CONTACT: Elizabeth Wolffe, Ph.D. of Sangamo BioSciences, Inc.,+1-510-970-6000, ext. 271, or email@example.com; or media, JustinJackson, +1-212-213-0006, or investors, John Cummings, +1-415-352-6262,both of Burns McClellan, Inc. for Sangamo BioSciences, Inc.
Web site: http://www.sangamo.com/