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EpiVax receives JDRF program funding to develop diabetes drug using natural 'regulatory' T-cells
Date:10/25/2007

diabetes and its complications.

In most patients with Type 1 diabetes, immune responses to the bodys insulin protein diminish insulin production; thus blood sugar is not properly regulated. The insulin protein can be produced in the laboratory and administered as therapy, but this requires frequent injections for life.

The approach used by EpiVax is called Antigen-Specific Adaptive Tolerance Induction (ASATI) to specifically target and reduce undesirable immune responses. EpiVax used its proprietary computer algorithms to identify the molecules that induce ASATI. Because ASATI uses the bodys own natural responses, this intervention has the potential to be far safer than immunosuppressive drugs that are now being studied. The promising treatment, called Epi-13, may have application to a broad range of auto-immune disorders.

EpiVax is pioneering the use of immunoinformatics for making safer, more effective human therapeutics. This approach also offers hope for individualizing therapies, also known as immuno-pharmacogenomics.

The EpiVax research program will be carried out in collaboration with Dr. David Scott of the University of Maryland and with Robert Smith of the Hallett Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology at Rhode Island Hospital. According to Dr. Smith, an expert in the treatment of Type 1 diabetes, This research deals with a critically important clinical problem and the approach EpiVax is taking in developing new diabetes therapies holds great promise.


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Contact: Susan Sherman
ssherman@jdrf.org
212-479-7510
Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International
Source:Eurekalert

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