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Isis Enters Broad Collaboration With Ortho-McNeil, Inc. for the Discovery, Development and Commercialization of Antisense Drugs to Treat Metabolic Diseases
Date:9/13/2007

adding to our strong pipeline in this therapeutic area."

About glucagon receptor (GCGR), target of ISIS 325568

Glucagon is a hormone that opposes the action of insulin and stimulates the liver to produce glucose. In Type 2 diabetes, unopposed action of glucagon can lead to increased blood glucose levels. Reducing the expression of liver GCGR using antisense inhibitors, and thereby reducing excessive liver glucose production, is expected to lower blood glucose levels and help control Type 2 diabetes. In preclinical studies, antisense inhibitors of GCGR led to improved glucose control and reduced levels of blood triglycerides without producing hypoglycemia. In addition, treatment with ISIS 325568 led to an increase in circulating glucagon-like peptide, or GLP-1, which is a hormone that helps to preserve pancreatic function, thereby enhancing insulin secretion.

About glucocorticoid receptor (GCCR), target of ISIS 377131

Glucocorticoid hormones have a variety of effects throughout the body, including promoting liver glucose production and fat storage. Although inhibition of GCCR has long been recognized as an attractive strategy for development of therapeutics for Type 2 diabetes, the side effects associated with systemic GCCR inhibition have challenged development of traditional drugs. Antisense inhibitors of GCCR take advantage of the unique tissue distribution of oligonucleotides that allows the antisense drugs to antagonize glucocortocoid action primarily in liver and fat tissue. Notably, antisense drugs do not reduce GCCR expression in the central nervous system or adrenal glands -- inhibition of GCCR expression in these two organs can lead to systemic side effects. In preclinical studies, Isis has shown that ISIS 377131 has a broad therapeutic profile that includes reduction of blood glucose levels, a dramatic and favorable effect on lipid levels including cholesterol and triglycerides, and a reduction in body fat.

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SOURCE Isis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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