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Procyon’s research findings to be presented at AACR Meeting


Montreal, QC March 24, 2003 Biotech company Procyon Biopharma announced today that its scientists and collaborators will be presenting four scientific posters reporting on its research and therapeutic programs at the 94th Annual American Association for Cancer Research Meeting, in Toronto, Canada (April 5-9, 2003).

The presentations include three posters related to Procyon’s Prostate Secretory Protein (PSP94) technology platform and one poster on the potential anti-angiogenic function of the Anti-Nucleosome Antibodies (ANsA) platform technology based lead therapeutic monoclonal antibody.

1) A synthetic 15 mer peptide derived from prostate secretory protein (psp)Can reduce tumor growth skeletal metastases and malignancy associated Hypercalcemia:

– Procyon’s collaborators from McGill University describe, for the first time, significant increase in reduction of tumor volume when Procyon’s lead therapeutic peptide PCK3145 was used in conjunction with Doxorubicin, a cytotoxic chemotherapeutic, in Dunning rat prostate cancer models. PCK3145, a non-toxic synthetic peptide derived from Prostate Secretory Protein (PSP94), is currently in human clinical Phase IIa trials in the UK, for the treatment of late stage hormone refractory prostate cancer, a condition for which no treatments are presently available. In addition the researchers show that the peptide PCK3145 was found to be effective in reducing hypercalcemia as well as to delay development of skeletal metastases and consequent hind limb paralysis in the rat model.

2) Prostate secretory protein of 94 amino acids (psp94): serum measurements of bound and free forms for the clinical management of prostate cancer:

– Procyon scientists report on the isolation, characterization andutility of the unique PSP94 binding protein from human serum, for the development of a novel diagnostic assay to determine the aggressivity of prostate cancer. The assay incorporating the measurement of the quantities of the “free” and “bound” forms of PSP94 in serum, is currently in the final stages of validation.

3) Knock-in mouse prostate cancer model: A comparative study with transgenic model reveals clinical characteristics relevant to human prostate cancer:

– Procyon collaborators at the University of Western Ontario describe the development of a novel Knock-in mouse prostate cancer model that reveals clinical characteristics relevant to human prostate cancer. The unique KIMAP mouse model shows the applicability of the Gleason grading system, the de facto standard widely used clinically for the diagnosis and prognosis of human prostate cancer. The proprietary KIMAP model meets the requirements for a new standard murine model for both basic and clinical studies for prostate cancer.

4) Tumor cells that undergo cell death can promote angiogenesis through the release of free nucleosomes or nucleosomes found in apoptotic bodies:

– A Procyon scientist shows for the first time the induction of angiogenesis by nucleosomes released from apoptotic tumor cells. Research findings reveal that nucleosomes mimicked heparan sulfate and bound to the pro-angiogenic factors FGF-2 (fibroblast growth factor-2), VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) and TGF-B (transforming growth factor-beta), thereby enhancing the proliferation of primary fibroblasts and promoting vascularization. Procyon’s lead therapeutic ANsA based chimeric antibody, c2C5, that targets nucleosomes attached to cancer cells, and hence potentially anti-angiogenic, is currently in pre-clinical stages of development.

“We are enormously proud of the achievements of our scientists and research collaborators for the ground-breaking developments in our cancer technology platforms,” says Hans J Mader, president and chief executive officer of Procyon. “These developments, which are all subjects of patent protection, add great value to our research and clinical programs for the treatment of prostate and other cancers,” he adds.