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  • Thomas Schulze
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AVONTEC obtains US patent on its drug candidate AVT-01 decoy ODN

(PresseBox) (Martinsried/Munich, ) AVONTEC GmbH, a privately held biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the development of novel therapies for chronic inflammatory diseases, today announced that the US Patent and Trademark office has granted a patent that protects its lead drug candidate AVT-01 decoy oligonucleotide (AVT-01 decoy ODN). AVONTEC is developing AVT-01 decoy ODN for the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases and is currently testing this drug candidate in patients in phase IIa clinical trials in asthma and inflammatory skin diseases.

Patent no. US 7.320.964 comprises the compound AVT-01 decoy ODN and its pharmaceutical use. Patents protecting the compound AVT-01 decoy ODN and its medical use have already been granted in Germany, Australia, China and Russia and are pending in 16 EP countries and 10 PCT member states including Japan, Canada and India.

"This pivotal patent adds to our growing patent portfolio on decoy oligonucleotides and their medical uses. Our lead compound protected by this patent belongs to a novel class of therapeutics offering a distinct mechanism of action. With this US patent, AVONTEC further strengthens its position as a leading company in the development of targeted therapies to address long term control of chronic inflammation." said Dr. Thomas Schulze, CEO of AVONTEC.

About AVT-01 decoy ODN AVT-01 decoy ODN contains a short, double-stranded oligonucleotide "decoy" that effectively inhibits STAT-1, a transcription factor shown to be strongly involved in the regulation of chronic inflammation. AVT-01 decoy ODN reduced inflammation in numerous pharmacological animal models. In pilot clinical studies this drug candidate showed an excellent safety profile and had demonstrable effects on relevant endpoints. Single doses of AVT-01 decoy ODN attenuated bronchial hyperresponsiveness in humans in a pilot clinical trial in asthmatic patients.

About chronic inflammation Chronic inflammation, which includes diseases such as asthma, psoriasis, arthritis, atherosclerosis among others, affects millions of people worldwide. A vast display of complex biological processes is triggered by multiple antigens in an inflammatory environment. In particular the activation of the patient's natural defense mechanisms presents a common underlying of the observed inflammatory complexity. Novel drugs will have to address these fundamental mechanisms. AVT-01 decoy ODN aims at an efficacious and safer treatment enabling the long-term control of the chronic inflammatory disease state.

Avontec GmbH

AVONTEC is a biopharmaceutical company specialized in the development of novel nucleic acid based therapeutic treatments targeting transcription factors. Transcription factors are the master switches of gene regulation, able to turn genes on and off with exquisite sensitivity. The molecules developed at AVONTEC are designed to specifically attenuate abnormal transcription factor signaling, thereby normalizing the underlying cause of the disease. AVONTEC develops these decoy ODNs as therapeutic agents to treat chronic inflammation. AVONTEC's lead programs, AVT 01 in asthma and AVT 02 in inflammatory skin diseases, have been successfully advanced into Phase IIa clinical trials that are expected to be completed within 2008. In addition, there are several candidates in the pipeline based on AVONTEC's core decoy technology. AVONTEC operates based on a lean business model with a seasoned management team experienced in clinical development.