OncoGenex Initiates Phase I Clinical Trial of OGX-427 in Cancer

    VANCOUVER, Aug. 1 /CNW/ - OncoGenex Technologies Inc. today announced
enrollment of the first patient in an open label, dose-escalation,
multi-center Phase I clinical study evaluating a new investigational drug,
OGX-427, in patients with breast, ovarian, bladder, prostate or lung cancer.
OGX-427 blocks production of Heat Shock Protein 27 (Hsp27), a cell-survival
protein that inhibits apoptotic cell death through multiple pathways. The
study, which will enroll up to 54 patients with cancers known to overexpress
Hsp27, will evaluate the safety, pharmacokinetics and biological activity of
OGX-427 alone and in combination with docetaxel. All patients who enter the
trial have failed therapies that are potentially curative or failed/refused
other standard therapy. Clinical sites in Canada and the United States will
participate in the study. Dr. Kim N. Chi, Medical Oncologist at the BC Cancer
Agency, is the study's principal investigator.
    Preclinical studies at the Prostate Centre at Vancouver General Hospital
show that OGX-427 significantly decreases levels of Hsp27, induces apoptosis
in several human cancer cell lines, has single agent anti-tumor activity, and
acts as a chemosensitizer with several cytotoxic drugs, including docetaxel.
    "We found that Hsp27 levels increased four-fold in prostate cancer
patients after treatment with chemo- or hormone therapy," said Dr. Martin
Gleave, Professor of Urology at the University of British Columbia, Director
of the Prostate Centre, and Chief Scientific Officer at OncoGenex. "When we
inhibited Hsp27 with OGX-427, we significantly delayed the growth of lung,
prostate, breast and other cancers in the lab."
    "Targeting Hsp27 is an attractive treatment strategy since this should
inhibit multiple pathways implicated in cancer progression and the development
of treatment resistance," said Scott Cormack, President and Chief Executive
Officer of OncoGenex.

    About OGX-427

    OGX-427 is a second-generation antisense drug that potently blocks
production of Hsp27, a cell-survival protein found at elevated levels in many
human cancers including prostate, lung, breast, ovarian, bladder, renal,
pancreatic, multiple myeloma and liver cancers. Standard anti-cancer therapies
are known to further elevate Hsp27 levels. Increased levels of Hsp27 in some
cancers are associated with metastasis, poor prognosis and resistance to
radiation or chemotherapy.

    About OncoGenex

    OncoGenex is committed to the development and commercialization of new
cancer therapies that address treatment resistance in cancer patients.
OncoGenex currently has three product candidates in development: OGX-011, 
OGX-427 and OGX-225. These product candidates are designed to selectively
inhibit the production of proteins that are associated with treatment
resistance and that are over-produced in response to a variety of cancer
treatments. OncoGenex' aim in targeting these particular proteins is to
disable the tumor cells' adaptive defenses, render the tumor cells susceptible
to attack with a variety of cancer therapies including chemotherapy, and
facilitate tumor cell death. More information on OncoGenex and the company's
pipeline is available at www.oncogenex.com.

For further information:

For further information: OncoGenex Contact: Scott Cormack, President &
CEO, (604) 805-2274, scormack@oncogenex.ca; OncoGenex Media Contact: Jason
Spark, Porter Novelli Life Sciences, (619) 849-6005,

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