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Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. Announces Poster Presentation Highlighting Observed Clinical Activity of KRX-0401 (Perifosine) at the American Society of Clinical Oncology Meeting in Chicago, Illinois

Phase 2 Results of Perifosine in the Treatment of Patients with

Relapsed/Refractory Waldenstrom's Macroglobulinemia to be presented

Tomorrow, Tuesday, June 3rd at 12:00pm in Room E450a

NEW YORK, June 2 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: KERX) today announced that abstracts related to KRX-0401 (Perifosine) have been selected for both poster presentation and publication during the American Society of Clinical Oncology Meeting currently taking place in Chicago, Illinois (May 31 - June 3, 2008).

Copies of these abstracts, which highlight the observed clinical and preclinical activity of KRX-0401 as a single agent and in combination with novel agents are currently available and can be viewed on-line through the ASCO website:

The following abstract will be available for viewing during the poster session taking place tomorrow, Tuesday, June 3, 2008, from 8:00am-12:00pm:

Abstract 8546: A Phase 2 trial of the novel oral Akt inhibitor perifosine in relapsed and/or refractory Waldenstrom macroglobulinemia

Investigators: Irene M. Ghobrial, X. Leleu, N. Rubin, R. Leduc, S. Chuma, M. Nelson, P. G. Richardson, S. P. Treon, K. C. Anderson

Following the poster session, lead investigator, Dr. Irene Ghobrial, will be presenting the abstract during the Lymphoma and Plasma Cell Disorders Poster Discussion Forum, scheduled to take place at 12:00pm in Room E450a.

Additionally, the following abstracts have been accepted for publication only:

Abstract 16024: Phase 1 multicenter trial of perifosine in combination with sorafenib for patients with advanced cancers including renal cell carcinoma.

Investigators: M. T. Schreeder, R. A. Figlin, J. J. Stephenson, L. Campos, S. P. Chawla, D. R. Spigel, A. Spira

Abstract 14565: Phase 1 report from a multicenter trial of perifosine (PERI) + sunitinib (SUT) in patients with advanced cancers including renal cell carcinoma.

Investigators: P. Allerton, B. Ebrahimi, M. T. Schreeder, P. Kaiser, S. P. Chawla

Abstract 16083: Preclinical rationale for combination targeted therapy in advanced clear cell renal cell carcinoma (RCC): Abrogation of rapamycin-mediated induction of AKT phosphorylation by perifosine.

Investigators: W. S. Holland, P. C. Mack, D. R. Gandara, P. N. Lara

KRX-0401 (Perifosine) Mechanism of Action and Profile

KRX-0401 (Perifosine) is a novel, potentially first-in-class, oral anti-cancer agent that modulates Akt and a number of other key signal transduction pathways, including the JNK and MAPK pathways, all of which are pathways associated with programmed cell death, cell growth, cell differentiation and cell survival. The effects of perifosine on Akt are of particular interest because of the importance of this pathway in the development of most cancers, the evidence that it is often activated in tumors that are resistant to other forms of anticancer therapy, and the difficulty encountered thus far in the discovery of drugs that will inhibit this pathway without causing excessive toxicity. High levels of activated Akt (pAkt) are seen frequently in many types of cancer and have been correlated with poor prognosis in patients with soft-tissue sarcoma, gastric, hepatocellular, endometrial, prostate, renal cell, head and neck cancers and hematological malignancies, as well as glioblastoma. The majority of tumors expressing high levels of pAkt were high-grade, advanced stage or had other features associated with poor prognosis. High pAkt is often seen in tumors that are resistant to conventional cancer treatments, including radiotherapy, chemotherapy, endocrine therapy, and especially therapy with some of the newer biologicals.

To date, over 1,700 patients have been treated with KRX-0401 in trials conducted both in the United States and Europe. Its safety profile is distinctly different from that of most cytotoxic agents. It does not appear to cause myelosuppression (depression of the immune system that may lead to life threatening infections), thrombocytopenia (a decrease in platelets that may result in bleeding), skin rash, flu-like symptoms or alopecia (hair loss); all of these toxicities occur frequently with many of the currently available treatments for cancer. The main side effects of perifosine are nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fatigue, but these are either mild or non-existent in lower doses that have induced tumor regression. Responses have been seen with both daily and weekly regimens. At the doses studied, the daily regimens were better tolerated.

In Phase 1/2 trials, KRX-0401 has induced tumor regressions and/or caused disease stabilization in a variety of tumor types. KRX-0401 has shown single agent partial responses in renal cell and hepatocellular carcinoma, soft tissue sarcoma, GIST tumors, mesothelioma, and carcinoma of the appendix. There is also evidence of activity in hematological malignancies, especially multiple myeloma. Disease stabilization, defined as time on treatment without progression for at least 6 months has been seen in 20 tumor types, including metastatic renal cell cancer, hepatocellular carcinoma, melanoma, carcinoid, prostate, head and neck, breast, and small cell lung cancer. Responding patients, including stable disease, have been treated for various durations up to more than three years.

KRX-0401 (perifosine) is in-licensed by Keryx from Aeterna Zentaris, Inc. (Nasdaq: AEZS; TSX: AEZ) in the United States, Canada and Mexico.

About Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc.

Keryx Biopharmaceuticals is focused on the acquisition, development and commercialization of medically important, novel pharmaceutical products for the treatment of life-threatening diseases, including renal disease and cancer. Keryx is developing Zerenex(TM) (ferric citrate), an oral, iron-based compound that has the capacity to bind to phosphate and form non-absorbable complexes. Zerenex is currently in Phase 2 clinical development for the treatment of hyperphosphatemia (elevated phosphate levels) in patients with end-stage renal disease, or ESRD. The Company is also developing KRX-0401 (perifosine), a novel, potentially first-in-class, oral anti-cancer agent that modulates Akt, a protein in the body associated with tumor survival and growth. KRX-0401 also modulates a number of other key signal transduction pathways, including the JNK and MAPK pathways, which are pathways associated with programmed cell death, cell growth, cell differentiation and cell survival. KRX-0401 is currently in Phase 2 clinical development for multiple tumor types. The Company also has an in-licensing and acquisition program designed to identify and acquire additional drug candidates. Keryx is headquartered in New York City.

Cautionary Statement

Some of the statements included in this press release, particularly those anticipating future clinical and business prospects for KRX-0401, may be forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. For those statements, we claim the protection of the safe harbor for forward- looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Among the factors that could cause our actual results to differ materially are the following: our ability to successfully complete the Phase 1 and Phase 2 clinical trials for KRX-0401; we may not be able to meet anticipated development timelines for KRX-0401 due to recruitment, clinical trial results, manufacturing capabilities or other factors; and other risk factors identified from time to time in our reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Any forward-looking statements set forth in this press release speak only as of the date of this press release. We do not intend to update any of these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that occur after the date hereof. This press release and prior releases are available at The information in our website is not incorporated by reference into this press release and is included as an inactive textual reference only.


Lauren Fischer

Director - Investor Relations

Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc.

Tel: 212.531.5965


SOURCE Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc.
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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