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AMT Obtains License to Amgen's GDNF Gene to Develop Treatment for Parkinson's Disease with AMT's Proprietary Gene Therapy Platform
Date:9/17/2008

AMSTERDAM, The Netherlands, September 18 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Amsterdam Molecular Therapeutics (Euronext: AMT), a leader in the field of human gene therapy, today announced that it obtained a license from Amgen to use their GDNF gene for the development of a gene therapy treatment for Parkinson's disease. The combination of this gene with AMT's proprietary adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene therapy platform could potentially allow the development of an effective, long-term treatment for this progressive and crippling disease.

Parkinson's disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disease. It usually affects people over 65 with an estimated total of 4.5 million patients worldwide. Due to increasing life expectancy of the general population, the number of patients with Parkinson's disease is expected to double to around 9 million patients between now and the year 2030.

Patients with Parkinson's disease slowly lose control of their muscles, resulting in tremors, stiffness, slowness of movement, and lack of coordination and thus in a serious loss of quality of life. Parkinson's is caused by degeneration and death of nerve cells in a specific part of the brain. These cells produce dopamine, a substance necessary for communication between nerve cells involved in the coordination of movement. Current therapies are limited to treatment of symptoms. There are no therapies available that slow down or halt the progression of the disease.

A new way to deliver the GDNF gene

"This license from Amgen offers us a unique opportunity to combine our gene technology and know-how with the GDNF gene as a tool to create a potential breakthrough in the treatment for this common and severely debilitating disease," said Ronald Lorijn, CEO of AMT "We believe our gene therapy approach could be an effective way to deliver the gene to the regions of the brain affected by Parkinson's disease."

Protect and improve nerve cells with GDNF


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SOURCE Amsterdam Molecular Therapeutics B.V
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