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Celtaxsys Acquires Clinical Stage Innate Immunity Drug for Inflammation
Date:1/5/2012

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Celtaxsys, Inc. a privately held biotechnology company, announced today that it has acquired CTX-4430 (formerly EP-501), a clinical stage drug candidate that inhibits the pro-inflammatory enzyme Leukotriene A4 Hydrolase (LTA4H), from Estrellita Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

In preclinical studies, CTX-4430 has demonstrated the ability to safely and effectively reduce the progression of chronic inflammation in several animal models. LTA4H is a key enzyme in the production of the major pro-inflammatory mediator Leukotriene B4 (LTB4).  LTA4H and receptors to LTB4 are known to be elevated in a number of human lung diseases including Cystic Fibrosis, Asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Additionally, elevated levels of LTA4H recently have been located at active demyelinating lesions in the brains of patients with Multiple Sclerosis (MS). Thus, CTX-4430 has the potential to be a first-in-class oral treatment for multiple indications with unmet clinical need.

"The acquisition of CTX-4430 and the entire LTA4H project gives us several unique opportunities to introduce superior products to fulfill unmet medical needs" said Dr. Michael R. Hanley, Chief Executive Officer of Celtaxsys. "The addition of the LTA4H project to our development portfolio fits perfectly with our core business of modulating innate immunity to treat chronic inflammatory disorders, especially in our major areas of interest, Cystic Fibrosis and Multiple Sclerosis."

William Guilford, President of Estrellita, stated, "We are very pleased to conclude this transaction with Celtaxsys who will continue the development of CTX-4430. Celtaxsys' management has a proven track record of successfully developing value-added therapies for important indications, with particular strength in the field of inflammation and therefore is an ideal choice to move CTX-4430 through the clinic and onto the market."

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