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Bionovo Announces Publication of Data on Active Compound and Mechanism of Action for Its Preclinical Cancer Treatment, BN108

EMERYVILLE, Calif., April 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Bionovo, Inc. (Nasdaq: BNVI) today announced the poster presentation of significant, new data on the nature of the active compound and mechanism of action for its preclinical cancer drug candidate, BN108. The presentation is being made at the 2009 conference of the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) in Denver, today.

In summary, the study concludes the following:

  • BN108, an aqueous extract of Anemarrhena asphodeloides, selectively induces cell death in breast cancer cells and other tumor cells without having a toxic effect on normal cells.
  • Timosaponin AIII (TAIII) has been identified as an active compound from BN108 that is responsible for the selective activity of BN108 towards breast cancer cells.
  • BN108 and TAIII rapidly and selectively inhibited major pro-survival cellular pathways that are often over-active in breast cancer.

"Currently available treatments for advanced breast cancer patients have limited efficacy and are associated with severe toxicity. Significantly more effective, less toxic therapies are urgently needed. Our studies suggest that therapeutic strategies based on BN108 and TspA3 may achieve more efficacious and safer clinical outcomes for breast cancer patients," stated Emma Shtivelman, Ph.D., the director of cancer research at Bionovo.

"BN108 offers great potential for the treatment of cancer. It is a drug that targets cell survival mechanisms, but it does it only in cancer cells. We anticipate it will have little to no collateral toxicity as is observed with all current cancer chemotherapy," said Isaac Cohen, chairman and CEO of Bionovo, Inc. "Bionovo is looking forward to entering clinical testing with BN108. We believe the market opportunity for drugs that are safe, effective and do not compromise the cancer patient's quality of life is exciting."

Bionovo, Inc.

Bionovo, Inc. is a pharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of safe and effective treatments for women's health and cancer, markets with significant unmet needs and billions in potential annual revenue. The company applies its expertise in the biology of menopause and cancer to design new drugs derived from botanical sources which have novel mechanisms of action. Based on the results of early and mid-stage clinical trials, Bionovo believes they have discovered new classes of drug candidates within their rich pipeline with the potential to be leaders in their markets. Bionovo is headquartered in Emeryville, California and is traded on the NASDAQ Capital Market under the symbol, "BNVI". For more information about Bionovo and its programs, visit:

Forward Looking Statements

This release contains certain forward-looking statements relating to the business of Bionovo, Inc. that can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "believes," "expects," or similar expressions. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, including uncertainties relating to product development, efficacy and safety, regulatory actions or delays, the ability to obtain or maintain patent or other proprietary intellectual property protection, market acceptance, physician acceptance, third party reimbursement, future capital requirements, competition in general and other factors that may cause actual results to be materially different from those described herein as anticipated, believed, estimated or expected. Certain of these risks and uncertainties are or will be described in greater detail in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which are available at Bionovo, Inc. is under no obligation (and expressly disclaims any such obligation) to update or alter its forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

SOURCE Bionovo, Inc.
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