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In Vitro and In Vivo Data Show Alfacell's Onocanse is Active,Against Naive and Chemoresistant Neuroblastoma Cells

Pre-Clinical Results Demonstrate Potential of ONCONASE for Treatment of Neuroblastoma

BLOOMFIELD, N.J., June 27, 2007 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Alfacell Corporation today announced that new data show ONCONASE, the company's lead drug candidate, is active against naive and chemoresistant neuroblastoma cells.

The pre-clinical in vitro and in vivo data published in Cancer Letters (2007; Vol. 250, Issue 1: 107-116) through a collaboration between Alfacell and Martin Michaelis, M.D., Ph.D., at the Institute of Medicinal Virology at Johann Wolfgang University of Frankfurt, were also recently presented in Germany.

Conclusions from the studies presented indicate that ONCONASE inhibits neuroblastoma cell growth and induces caspase-independent cell death in neuroblastoma cells independently of P-gp expression or p53 status, which has been shown to contribute to multi-drug resistance in neuroblastoma as well as most other human cancers. Transmission electronic microscope investigations suggest that ONCONASE induces a process in neuroblastoma cells called autophagy (the digestion of cellular constituents by enzymes of the same cell), which leads to apoptosis (programmed cell death). Anti-tumor activity of ONCONASE against drug-sensitive and chemoresistant neuroblastoma xenografts was confirmed in animals.

"The data speak to the broad potential application for ONCONASE in various types of cancer other than the gateway indication for mesothelioma," said Kuslima Shogen, Alfacell's chairman and chief executive officer. "We now have an even better understanding of the mechanism of action that ONCONASE utilizes in overcoming multiple drug resistance in various tumor types."

Neuroblastoma is a cancer that forms in the nerve tissue. It is the most common cancer in infants, and the fourth most common type of cancer in children. Neurons (nerve cells) are the main components of the brain and spinal cord an
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