Tacere Therapeutics Secures Financing And Resumes Development Of RNAi Hepatitis C Drug

Published: Oct 12, 2006

SAN JOSE, Calif., Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Tacere Therapeutics, Inc., an innovative biotechnology company specializing in the development of both traditional and novel therapeutics to treat serious infectious diseases, announced today that the company has secured an undisclosed amount of seed financing from Hokkaido Venture Capital, and has thus established operations and resumed preclinical development of TT-033i, its lead candidate for the treatment of Hepatitis C (HCV).

Sara Cunningham Hall, President and Chief Executive Officer of Tacere, stated, "As pioneers in RNA interference (RNAi) we are pleased to resume development of TT-033i, a drug that we have taken from concept to preclinical studies over the last several years. Initiated at Avocel, Inc. and furthered at Benitec Ltd., our expertise in Hepatitis C and RNAi allows Tacere to begin corporate life with a great deal of experience and a competitively staged clinical program.

"The company will also capitalize on its extensive knowledge of HCV to advance a number of novel small molecule compounds for the treatment of this viral disease. Broader market acceptance and lower regulatory hurdles continue to drive the development of small molecule antivirals. However, the emergence of RNAi as a legitimate therapeutic modality offers a powerful new approach to treating HCV. We look forward to returning to the forefront of this exciting technology."

Mike Catelani, Chairman, Senior Vice President, and Chief Financial Officer of Tacere, remarked, "It's not often that one has the opportunity to take the best of a technology and implement it anew in a sound and well-supported corporate structure. Tacere recently exclusively in-licensed from Benitec Ltd. the RNAi drug development program that this team has been advancing toward the clinic over the past four years. Tacere staff and management, with the support of a strong group of directors and scientific advisors, are well-positioned to move this program forward and meet the challenges of developing both traditional and novel therapeutics."

Tacere was founded by Mike Catelani, Sara Cunningham Hall, Dr. John Monahan, founder and former CEO of Avigen, Inc., and Dr. Amit Kumar, CEO of CombiMatrix Corporation. Scientific advisors of Tacere include notable scientists and clinicians, Dr. Paul Pockros, Director of the Liver Disease Center and Scripps Clinic Research Consortium, Dr. Robert Lanford, Scientist at the Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research and the Southwest National Primate Research Center, and Dr. Jonathan Coates, Founder and Chief Scientific Offer of Avexa Ltd.

About Tacere Therapeutics, Inc.

Tacere is an innovative biotechnology company focused on developing therapeutics to treat serious infectious diseases using its proprietary knowledge in the screening and development of both novel and traditional compounds. Tacere is located in San Jose, California, USA. Its lead therapeutic compound is TT-033i, an RNA interference (RNAi) drug for the treatment of Hepatitis C. For additional information, please visit www.tacerebio.com .

About Hokkaido Venture Capital

Hokkaido Venture Capital, the first venture capital firm in Japan with regional specialization operating outside big financial institutions or Keiretsu, focuses primarily on investment in technology-driven companies such as IT, biotechnology, and healthcare. For additional information, please visit http://www.hokkaido-vc.com/english/hvc/index.html .

CONTACTS: TACERE THERAPEUTICS INC. Mike Catelani +1 408 839-1818 mcatelani@tacerebio.com MEDIA CONTACT: Gregory Tiberend Richard Lewis Communications, Inc. +1 212 827-0020 gtiberend@rlcinc.com

Tacere Therapeutics, Inc.

CONTACT: Mike Catelani of Tacere Therapeutics, Inc., +1-408-839-1818,mcatelani@tacerebio.com; or Gregory Tiberend of Richard LewisCommunications, Inc. for Tacere Therapeutics, Inc., +1-212-827-0020,gtiberend@rlcinc.com

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