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CSL Therapy That Mimics 'Good' Cholesterol May Reduce Plaque Volume,in Coronary Arteries

NEW ORLEANS, March 26, 2007 /PRNewswire/ -- CSL Limited today announced results from a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association that suggest infusions of a novel new drug, CSL-111, to acutely raise HDL ("good" cholesterol) levels, may reduce the amount of plaque in the coronary arteries of patients with a recent episode of acute coronary syndrome (ACS).

ACS is the term used to describe unstable angina and myocardial infarction (heart attack). It is estimated to be responsible for up to 600,000 admissions to the hospital per year in the US. Despite improvements in management over many years, ten to fifteen percent of patients still experience a serious cardiovascular problem in the 12 months following an episode of ACS.

CSL-111 is a patented biologic product, consisting of apolipoprotein A-I purified from human plasma that is reconstituted to form a particle that chemically and biologically resembles human HDL. A 40 mg/kg dose of CSL-111 results in an approximately 50 percent elevation in blood HDL levels, which remain above normal for one week. It was discovered and is manufactured at CSL Behring in Switzerland.

The Effect of Reconstituted HDL on Atherosclerosis - Safety and Efficacy (ERASE) trial was a phase 2, randomized, blinded, placebo-controlled study conducted at 17 sites throughout Canada and coordinated by the Montreal Heart Institute. The trial examined whether four infusions of CSL-111, given at weekly intervals to patients with a recent episode of ACS, could reduce the volume of plaque in the coronary arteries. Assessment of the arteries was performed using intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) and quantitative coronary angiography (QCA) before and two-three weeks after the treatment. IVUS is a technique in which a tiny ultrasound probe is inserted into the coronary arteries to determine the change in plaque during treatment. Coronary angiography is an X-ray
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