TORONTO, April 4, 2012 /CNW/ - Amorfix Life Sciences Ltd. announces that it has completed a series of studies with its lead anti-PrP antibody that demonstrate specific, dose-related killing of ovarian tumor cells. The Company's tumor-specific anti-PrP antibody was coupled to a toxic payload (urease) through collaboration with Helix Biopharma, and retained its specific binding to tumor cells without binding to normal ovarian cells.
With the establishment of proof of concept in cultured tumor cell studies, the Company will now move into the next phase of product development and evaluate the therapeutic effect of the antibody-urease conjugate for proof of concept in an animal model of cancer. The Company plans to begin these studies soon and expects to have initial results by mid August of this year.
"We have shown that the anti-PrP antibody is capable of delivering a toxic payload, in this case the molecule urease, directly to tumor cells providing a high degree of specificity with no binding to normal cells" said Amorfix President and CEO Dr. Robert Gundel. "These are very exciting and important results and represent a significant advance in the development of a novel therapeutic for the treatment of ovarian cancer."
In addition, these results validate the Company's ProMIS™ discovery technology to identify novel disease specific epitopes (DSEs) that are only expressed on the cell surface of tumor cells. This allows for the generation of cancer therapeutics expected to have greater efficacy and better safety profiles compared to traditional cancer therapies, which affect healthy fast growing cells in addition to the cancer cells and thus result in a large number of unpleasant and often dose-limiting toxicities.
About Ovarian Cancer
Ovarian cancer is the fifth most common cancer among women, and it causes more deaths than any other type of female reproductive cancer. Most deaths from ovarian cancer occur in women age 55 and older. Ovarian cancer is often not diagnosed until late-stage disease when the cancer has spread to other organs in the body, which contributes to the short survival time following diagnosis. Ovarian cancer is typically treated with surgery and chemotherapy. Chemotherapy is not very effective as a treatment and is associated with a number of potential dose-limiting side effects due to its non-specific killing of both tumor and normal cells.
Amorfix Life Sciences Ltd. (TSX:AMF) is an early-stage product development company developing therapeutic products and diagnostics targeting misfolded protein diseases. Amorfix utilizes its computational discovery platform, ProMIS™, to predict novel Disease Specific Epitopes (DSEs) on the molecular surface of misfolded proteins. Using this technology, Amorfix is developing novel antibody therapeutics and companion diagnostics for cancer and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). In addition, Amorfix's proprietary Epitope Protection™ technology enables it to specifically identify very low levels of misfolded proteins in a biological sample. Use of this technology has generated a cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) screening test for Alzheimer's Disease (AD), and an ultrasensitive method for detecting the hallmark of AD, aggregated beta-Amyloid, in brain tissue, CSF and blood from animal models of AD. For more information about Amorfix, visit www.amorfix.com.
The TSX has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. This information release may contain certain forward-looking information. Such information involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from those implied by statements herein, and therefore these statements should not be read as guarantees of future performance or results. All forward-looking statements are based on the Company's current beliefs as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to it as well as other factors. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Due to risks and uncertainties, including the risks and uncertainties identified by the Company in its public securities filings, actual events may differ materially from current expectations. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless required by law.
ProMIS™ and Epitope Protection™ are trademarks of Amorfix Life Sciences Ltd.
For further information:
Dr. Robert Gundel
President and Chief Executive Officer
Amorfix Life Sciences Ltd.
Tel: (416) 847-6957
Fax: (416) 847-6899
Acting Chief Financial Officer
Amorfix Life Sciences Ltd.
Tel: (416) 847-6926
Fax: (416) 847-6899