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Bionovo Reports on Metabolic Studies Related to Its Menopausal Hot Flash Drug Candidate
Date:9/12/2008

EMERYVILLE, Calif., Sept. 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Bionovo, Inc. (Nasdaq: BNVI) today announced the publishing of a paper in the journal for the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Drug Metabolism and Disposition, entitled "Oxidative In Vitro Metabolism of Liquiritigenin, a Bioactive Compound Isolated from the Chinese Herbal Selective Estrogen Beta-Receptor Agonist MF101."

Liquiritigenin is one of the active compounds of MF101, Bionovo's drug candidate for the treatment of menopausal hot flashes, currently poised to start Phase 3 clinical testing.

The paper describes in vitro metabolism of Liquiritigenin which is almost exclusively metabolized by cytochrome P450 3A4. The metabolite that was identified is three times more potent than the parent compound towards selective activation of the estrogen receptor beta. Enzyme kinetic experiments suggest that clinically relevant drug-drug interactions are highly unlikely, which is a positive safety feature of MF101, applicable if the drug is taken in combination with other drugs.

The paper is available at http://dmd.aspetjournals.org/cgi/reprint/dmd.108.021402v1.

"Most adverse drug reactions are linked to metabolism of the drug in the human body. Many women of menopausal age may be simultaneously taking other drugs for various indications. Our study shows that the metabolism of a major active compound of MF101 will most likely not adversely interact with other drugs. It also results in the production of an even more potent estrogen receptor beta agonist potentially enhancing the clinical efficacy. The results of this study mark a critical milestone in our mission to develop truly safe and effective treatments for significant unmet medical needs in women's health," said Dr. Isaac Cohen, Bionovo's chairman and CEO.

Bionovo, Inc.

Bionovo is a pharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of safe and effective treatments for women's health and cancer, markets with significant unmet needs and billions in potential annual revenue. The company applies its expertise in the biology of menopause and cancer to design new drugs derived from botanical sources which have novel mechanisms of action. Based on the results of early and mid-stage clinical trials, Bionovo believes they have discovered new classes of drug candidates within their rich pipeline with the potential to be leaders in their markets. Bionovo is headquartered in Emeryville, California and is traded on the NASDAQ Capital Market under the symbol, "BNVI". For more information about Bionovo and its programs, visit http://www.bionovo.com.

Forward Looking Statements

This release contains certain forward-looking statements relating to the business of Bionovo, Inc. that can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "believes," "expects," or similar expressions. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, including uncertainties relating to product development, efficacy and safety, regulatory actions or delays, the ability to obtain or maintain patent or other proprietary intellectual property protection, market acceptance, physician acceptance, third party reimbursement, future capital requirements, competition in general and other factors that may cause actual results to be materially different from those described herein as anticipated, believed, estimated or expected. Certain of these risks and uncertainties are or will be described in greater detail in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which are available at http://www.sec.gov. Bionovo, Inc. is under no obligation (and expressly disclaims any such obligation) to update or alter its forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.


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SOURCE Bionovo, Inc.
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