ATLANTA, June 23 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- GeoVax Labs, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: GOVX), an Atlanta-based biopharmaceutical company developing human vaccines for diseases caused by the HIV-1 (Human Immunodeficiency Virus), and other infectious agents, today announced the results of its Annual Shareholders Meeting, held on June 18, 2009.
During the meeting, shareholders re-elected seven nominees for directors of the company to serve until the 2010 Annual Meeting of Shareholders and until their successors are duly elected or appointed and qualified. They are: Donald Hildebrand, Andrew Kandalepas, Dean Kollintzas, Robert McNally, Harriet Robinson, John Spencer and Peter Tsolinas. Additionally, stockholders ratified the appointment of Porter Keadle Moore LLP as the company's independent registered public accounting firm for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2009.
Don Hildebrand, company co-founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors, provided opening remarks at the meeting, highlighting significant progress over the past year. A few of the key advances presented included: GeoVax as being the only company currently conducting Phase 2a clinical trials for an AIDS vaccine in the U.S., excellent safety and immune responses being reported in five completed human trials, the advancement of plans to begin human therapeutic [treatment] trials in the U.S., stable corporate financial condition, rising recent stock price, substantial increase in the number of new investors in GeoVax, substantial press coverage and investor interest at the World BIO Conference in Atlanta, invitations to present GeoVax at various investor conferences and several scientific presentations and publications by Dr. Robinson in the U.S. as well as in Europe.
In addition to the business of the annual meeting, Robert McNally, president and chief executive officer, provided an overview of the company's progress, highlighting GeoVax's performance for the year ended December 31, 2008 and the outlook for the year ahead. Dr. McNally noted, "Last year was a highly rewarding year for GeoVax. We announced that we would conduct a critically important Phase 2 AIDS Human Trials in the U.S. and Peru. That Phase 2a trial is currently ongoing and being conducted in collaboration with the U.S. National Institutes of Health-sponsored HIV Vaccine Trials Network (HVTN). Planning is progressing well for initiating a therapeutic vaccination study in people already infected with HIV/AIDS. We are also utilizing our $17 million NIH grant to enhance our vaccine development."
Dr. McNally added, "We also are greatly encouraged by our recently signed proposal to discuss a cooperative arrangement with Chicago's Cook County Board President Todd H. Stroger and the Commissioners of Cook County; the Cook County Health and Hospitals Systems Board ("Health System"); and the Ruth M. Rothstein's CORE Center's Foundation ("Foundation"), which was founded by Cook County, Illinois and
A copy of the investor presentation presented at the Annual Shareholder Meeting can be found on GeoVax's website at www.geovax.com.
HIV affects the entire globe and comes in a variety of subtypes. Clade B is the predominant subtype in North America where there are roughly 60,000 new infections each year. Globally, there are about 2.5 million AIDS infections per year, most primarily involving subtypes AG, B, and C. In 2007, UNAIDS reported 1.3 million people living with AIDS in North America and 33.2 million people living with AIDS worldwide. Presently, there is little to prevent HIV transmission other than education, circumcision, and condoms. It is obvious from the spread of the disease that these methods are not adequate. Existing treatments for individuals infected with HIV include anti-retroviral therapies that are effective but have serious medical side effects and are very expensive (upwards of $1,500/month). This cost is borne primarily by the individual and sometimes by third party insurance, local healthcare, federal or world health organizations. Development and distribution of an effective HIV/AIDS vaccine holds great promise. The GeoVax Vaccine would cost a fraction of the cost of current treatments and, to date, has not elicited serious adverse side effects in several human trials. A population vaccinated with an effective HIV-1 vaccine would be expected to significantly decrease the prevalence of AIDS over time.
About GeoVax Labs, Inc.
GeoVax Labs, Inc. is a biotechnology company, established to develop, manufacture, license and commercialize human vaccines for diseases caused by HIV-1 (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) and other infectious agents. GeoVax's AIDS vaccine technology is the subject of 20 issued or filed patent applications. GeoVax AIDS vaccines are designed for use in uninfected people to prevent Acquired Immunodeficiency Disease (AIDS), caused by the virus known as HIV-1, should the person ever become infected. GeoVax AIDS vaccines also may be effective as therapeutics (treatment of people already infected with AIDS virus).
GeoVax's core AIDS vaccine technologies were developed by Dr. Harriet Robinson, Senior V.P. of Research and Development, through a collaboration of colleagues at
GeoVax's AIDS vaccines have moved forward in human clinical trials conducted by the HIV Vaccine Trials Network (HVTN) based in Seattle, Washington. The HVTN, funded through a cooperative agreement with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is the largest worldwide clinical trials program dedicated to the development and testing of AIDS vaccines. Preclinical work enabling evaluation of GeoVax DNA and MVA vaccines was funded and supported by NIAID, which provided additional support to GeoVax AIDS vaccine development program with a $17 million IPCAVD grant awarded in late 2007.
Safe Harbor Statement
All statements in this news release, not statements of historical fact, are forward-looking statements. These statements are based on expectations and assumptions on the date of this press release and are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements. Risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, whether: GeoVax can develop and manufacture these vaccines with the desired characteristics in a timely manner, GeoVax's vaccines will be safe for human use, GeoVax's vaccines will effectively prevent AIDS in humans, vaccines will receive regulatory approvals necessary to be licensed and marketed, GeoVax raises required capital to complete vaccine development, there is development of competitive products that may be more effective or easier to use than GeoVax's products, and other factors over which GeoVax has no control. GeoVax assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements, and does not intend to do so. Certain matters discussed in this news release are forward-looking statements involving certain risks and uncertainties including, without limitation, risks detailed in the Company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings and reports.
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