NEW YORK CITY - February 29, 2008 - Results from a clinical study using technology licensed by The Vaccine Company (TVC), an InvestBio, Inc. portfolio company, were presented at the 49th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology.
The company's PR1 peptide vaccine is derived from two proteins that are either overexpressed or aberrantly expressed in certain cancer cells. Administration of the PR1 vaccine to some patients elicits the proliferation of, PR1-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes that selectively kill three types of leukemia - myelodysplastic syndrome, acute myelogenous leukemia and chronic myelogenous leukemia.
In the Phase I/II study, the median time in remission for leukemia patients who responded to the PR1 vaccine was three times longer than for non-responders. The Phase I/II clinical trial ran from 2000 to 2006 and was designed to assess the vaccine's safety and ability to elicit an immune response. TVC is now conducting a Pivotal Phase III clinical trial with the vaccine to treat acute myelogenous leukemia.
The PR1 vaccine was developed by Jeffrey Molldrem, M.D., professor at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. Dr. Molldrem co-founded TVC in 2003, and the company licensed the technology from M.D. Anderson in 2004. M.D. Anderson has an equity interest in TVC.
"Dr. Molldrem's positive results with the PR1 vaccine as reported at ASH gave us confidence to invest in follow-on Phase III and Phase II clinical trials of the vaccine. Early results are validating that confidence," said Gregory Thayer, President & CEO of The Vaccine Company. "We're delighted by the responses that The Vaccine Company was able to present," said Scott Mathis, founder and head of InvestBio and its parent company, Diversified Private Equity Corp. (DPEC Partners). InvestBio creates opportunities for accredited investors to participate in private equity investments in promising biotech companies. InvestBio has raised $20 million for TVC. Mr. Mathis serves on the TVC board of directors.
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Eric Stear, Corporate Communications & Marketing Manager