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Quark Pharmaceuticals to Present at American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics Annual Meeting

FREMONT, Calif., April 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Quark Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a development-stage pharmaceutical company discovering and developing novel RNA interference (RNAi)-based therapeutics, today announced that James D. Thompson, Ph.D., Vice President, Pharmaceutical Development, will give a presentation on Tuesday, April 20 at this year's American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics (ASPET) Annual Meeting, which is taking place from April 18-22, 2009 in New Orleans.

Dr. Thompson's presentation will be part of a session titled "Discovery and Development of Oligonucleotide Therapeutics," which is sponsored by ASPET's Divisions for Drug Discovery, Drug Development & Regulatory Affairs and Molecular Pharmacology. His talk will be on the past, present, and future of oligonucleotide therapeutics. Other leaders in RNAi will also present during the session including: Pamela A. Pavco, Vice President of Pharmaceutical Development at RXi Pharmaceuticals (topic: Special issues in the discovery and development of RNAi therapeutics); Christina Gamba-Vitalo, Senior Director Preclinical Development at Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (topic: Progress in developing siRNAs as drugs); and Patrick L. Iversen, Senior Vice President of Strategic Alliances and former Senior Vice President of Research and Development at AVI BioPharma (topic: Pharmacokinetics of oligonucleotide therapeutics).

Daniel Zurr, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Quark, said, "We are pleased with Quark's participation in this session alongside respected leaders in RNAi development. The invitation reinforces that the drug development industry recognizes Quark's leadership position in siRNA development. Some of the Company's accomplishments include: a number of on-going clinical trials of synthetic siRNAs in various disease indications, status as the first company to administer a synthetic siRNA systemically in humans, an, enabling portfolio of IP covering synthetic siRNAs and validating partnerships with companies such as Pfizer."

Dr. Thompson has been a leader in siRNA development for several years. Prior to joining Quark, he was Director of Research and Development at Genta, and previously was Director of Biology Research at Ribozyme Pharmaceuticals, which was acquired by Merck after changing its name to Sirna Therapeutics.

About Quark Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Quark Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a development-stage pharmaceutical company engaged in discovering and developing novel RNAi-based therapeutics. Quark has a fully integrated drug development platform that spans therapeutic target identification to drug development. Quark's RNAi technology includes novel siRNA structures and chemistry providing Quark with freedom to operate in the siRNA intellectual property arena, as well as the ability for non-invasive delivery of siRNA to other target tissues including the eye, ear, lung, spinal cord and brain.

PF-4523655 (RTP801i-14), currently in Phase II clinical trials, is a synthetic, chemically modified siRNA designed to inhibit the expression of the gene RTP801 discovered by Quark through the gene discovery platform BiFAR. PF-4523655 is licensed to Pfizer. In addition, Quark's current clinical pipeline includes QPI-1002, the first systemically administered siRNA drug in human clinical trials, developed by Quark for the prevention of acute kidney injury (AKI) following major cardiac surgery and of delayed graft function in kidney transplantation. For the structure of these products Quark has licenses from Silence Therapeutics and from Alnylam Pharmaceuticals.

QPI-1007, a siRNA that utilizes a proprietary structure developed by Quark, is being evaluated in advanced IND-enabling preclinical studies as a neuroprotective agent for eye diseases. In addition, Quark has a broad pipeline of siRNA drug candidates based on novel structures developed internally. The Company expects to utilize the structures to develop additional RNAi drug candidates.

Quark is headquartered in Fremont, California and operates research and development facilities in Boulder, Colorado and Ness-Ziona, Israel. Additional information is available at

    Quark Pharmaceuticals, Inc.        The Ruth Group (investors / media)
    Juliana Friedman                   Sara Ephraim / Janine McCargo
    +972 89 30 5111                    (646) 536-7004 / 7033

SOURCE Quark Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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