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Anti-Fibrotic Data from Amira Pharmaceuticals' LPA1 Receptor Antagonist Program Published in the British Journal of Pharmacology
Date:5/6/2010

SAN DIEGO, May 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Amira Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced today that preclinical data from its LPA1 receptor antagonist program has been published in the British Journal of Pharmacology.  

The LPA1 receptor is part of the Phosphatidic Acid/ Lysophosphatidylcholine pathway and has recently been implicated for having a role in lung, kidney and skin fibrosis.  In particular, activation of the LPA1 receptor may promote fibrosis in Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF), a lung disease for which there are currently no effective treatments available.

"The data in this publication demonstrate the potential of a high affinity, oral antagonist of the LPA1 receptor in diseases associated with fibrosis, edema and inflammation," said James Swaney, Ph.D., Senior Scientist at Amira and the senior author of the paper.   "Importantly, our proof of concept compound, AM966, demonstrates superior efficacy in a preclinical model when compared to other anti-inflammatory and/or anti-fibrotic agents including dexamethasone and pirfenidone.  We feel that these data pave the way for novel, 'first in class' molecules to target IPF and other fibrotic diseases via blockade of the LPA1 receptor."

Bob Baltera, Chief Executive Officer of Amira, added, "We are focused on developing LPA1 antagonists in fibrotic diseases.  Many of the potential indications address specialty care markets and give Amira the opportunity to bring a therapeutic product through to commercialization.  Grievous diseases such as IPF desperately need new therapies and the team at Amira is working hard to see these opportunities into the clinic as soon as possible."

About Amira

Founded in 2005 and headquartered in San Diego, Amira Pharmaceuticals is a small molecule pharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and early development of new drugs to treat inflammatory disease.  Our discovery team is building on unparalleled insights into bioactive lipid pathways and complex signaling processes controlling many conditions including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cardiovascular and fibrotic diseases.  Amira has a partnership with GlaxoSmithKline for the development of FLAP (5-lipoxygenase activating protein) inhibitors in respiratory and cardiovascular disease.

Amira combines the rigor of a big pharmaceutical company with the ingenuity and energy of a small company, creating an environment for efficient development of novel compounds and effective pre-clinical and clinical program decisions. Its scientific founders have successfully worked together for more than a decade and were pivotal in the discovery of a number of inflammatory drugs, including Singulair®. The drug hunters at Amira are now actively leveraging their history of success to create high-value compounds for the future.  For more information, visit www.amirapharm.com.


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SOURCE Amira Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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