Additional data to be published in an upcoming issue of Anti-Cancer Drugs
VANCOUVER, March 20 /CNW/ - Protox(TM) Therapeutics Inc.
(TSX-V:PRX) today announced that two peer-reviewed publications
will feature Protox's PRX 302. The Journal of the National Cancer
Institute ("JNCI") has published the work conducted by Dr. Sam
Denmeade and his team at Johns Hopkins University in collaboration
with Protox scientists. The paper describes the Company's compound,
PRX302, which is a prostate specific antigen (PSA) activated
pro-drug being developed for the treatment of prostate cancer and
"Having results of our PRX302 research program published in a prestigious journal such as JNCI is a testament to the importance of advancing PRX302 for prostate cancer and BPH," stated Dr. Fahar Merchant, President and CEO of Protox. "The published results are consistent with the encouraging interim data from the ongoing Phase I prostate cancer trial reported earlier this year and supports the planned Phase I BPH clinical trial which we expect to commence in Q2 of 2007."
The major advantage of using PRX302 as a therapeutic agent for prostatic diseases is that it involves direct injection into the target tissue and selective activation by PSA produced only by the target tissue. The paper, entitled "A prostate-specific antigen-activated channel-forming toxin as therapy for prostatic disease" (JNCI, Vol.99, Issue 5 pp, 376-385) found that: PRX302 direct injection into the prostate did not cause any attributable accumulation of PRX302 outside of the prostate gland; is not toxic to adjacent non-PSA producing organs and tissues; and PRX302 has a selective mechanism of action and favourable safety profile.
A second paper entitled, "Recombinant prostate-specific antigen proaerolysin shows selective protease sensitivity and cell cytotoxicity" is to appear in the upcoming issue of Anti-Cancer Drugs (ACD). The journal will publish the work cond ucted by Dr Arthur Frankel and his team at the Cancer Research Institute of Scott and White Memorial Hospital in collaboration with scientists at Protox and Johns Hopkins University. Key findings include: human prostate cancer cells are significantly more sensitive to PRX302 in the presence of active PSA; PRX302 was totally resistant to thrombin, matrix metalloprotease 7 (MMP-7), human kallikrein 1 (hk1) and human kallikrein 2 (hk2) activation; and among the normal cells tested, the PSA-producing prostate epithelial cells were the only normal cells that were highly sensitive to PRX302.
Both publications demonstrated that the PSA-activated strategy for PRX302 has a number of inherent advantages as a therapeutic strategy for locally recurrent prostate cancer and BPH.
Protox Therapeutics is a leader in advancing novel, targeted protein toxin therapeutics for treatment of cancer and other proliferative diseases. The company is actively developing two distinct but complementary platforms, INxin(TM) and PORxin, and currently has three clinical programs in
development. A Phase IIa clinical trial into the use of PRX321 (INxin) for the treatment of primary brain cancer has been completed and the drug has received Fast Track Designation and Orphan Drug Status from the US FDA. In addition, a Phase I trial has been completed for PRX321 to treat patients with renal cell carcinoma and non-small cell lung cancer. Patient enrolment is underway for a Phase I clinical study into the use of PRX302 (PORxin) to treat localized prostate cancer. PRX302 has also been approved by Health Canada to commence a Phase I clinical study for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia.
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Certain st atements included in this press release may be considered forward-looking. Such statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from those implied by such statements, and therefore these statements should not be read as guarantees of future performance or results. All forward-looking statements are based on Protox' current beliefs as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to Protox and relate to, among other things, anticipated financial performance, business prospects, strategies, regulatory developments, market acceptance and future commitments. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Due to risks and uncertainties, including the risks and uncertainties identified by Protox in its public securities filings; actual events may differ materially from current expectations. Protox disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
/For further information: James Beesley, Director, Investor
Protox Therapeutics, (604) 688-0199, firstname.lastname@example.org; Michael
Moore, Investor Relations, Equicom Group, (416) 815-0700 x 241,