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Sangamo BioSciences Initiates Phase 2 Clinical Trial of Treatment for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
Date:9/3/2008

SB-509 to be Evaluated in Repeat-Dosing Study in Subjects with ALS

RICHMOND, Calif., Sept. 3 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: SGMO) announced today that it has opened a Phase 2 clinical trial (SB-509-801) to evaluate its drug, SB-509, in subjects with ALS, a progressive, degenerative motor-neuron disease for which there are limited treatment options and no cure.

Sangamo's drug, SB-509, is an injectable formulation of a plasmid encoding a zinc finger DNA-binding protein transcription factor (ZFP TF(TM)) designed to upregulate the expression of the gene encoding vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF-A). SB-509 is also in three additional Phase 2 clinical trials for diabetic neuropathy and stem cell mobilization. VEGF-A has been shown to have nerve protection properties as well as promoting nerve, blood vessel and muscle growth.

In ALS, the motor nerves comprised of nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord that control the body's voluntary muscles, gradually degenerate. As the nerve cells begin to die, the muscles weaken and shrink. As the disease progresses, patients gradually lose the use of their limb and neck muscles, ultimately becoming paralyzed and unable to breathe without assistance. Fifty percent of patients with ALS die within three to five years of diagnosis. Currently, there is only one approved drug for ALS; Riluzole has been demonstrated to slow the progression of this debilitating disease with only modest clinical benefit, extending the survival of ALS patients by approximately three months.

"Initiation of a Phase 2 clinical study of SB-509 in subjects with a motor neuron and muscle disease such as ALS is an obvious next step in the evaluation of this novel therapeut
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SOURCE Sangamo BioSciences, Inc.
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