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Euroscreen Receives Key US Patent Covering Methods for Identifying Compounds Which Decrease HIV Entry Into Cells
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Brussels, Belgium -- Euroscreen SA today announced that it was awarded a US patent that covers the use of CCR5 receptor in the HIV field. This new Euroscreen US patent (7,285,390) protects methods to single out compounds that decrease the HIV entry into target cells.
The CCR5 receptor plays a central role in the mechanism by which human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) binds to and enters white blood cells, and therefore represents a key target in the search for effective novel treatments for HIV infection and AIDS. The recent FDA approval of Pfizer's Selzentry and the success associated with other CCR5 antagonist HIV drugs making their way to the market confirm and strengthen the approach to blocking HIV entry via CCR5. Euroscreen is also in preclinical development with its own CCR5 agonist program, providing significant potential improvements over the CCR5 antagonist approach.
Commenting on the announcement, Dr. Vincent Lannoy, Euroscreen's Business Development and Licensing Manager, said: "This new US patent further extends the combined ICOS Corporation - Human Genome Sciences Inc.- Euroscreen SA CCR5 patent portfolio which we are sublicensing to companies who are developing therapeutic drugs that block the ability of HIV to bind to the CCR5 receptor and therefore to infect the target cells. Portions of this portfolio are also being licensed to companies developing and selling CCR5-based diagnostic tests for the direction of such CCR5-directed therapeutic drugs."
Euroscreen has already obtained a similar European patent and is awaiting the issuance of equivalent patent applications in Japan and Canada, whose pending claims relate to similar subject matter.
About Euroscreen SA
Euroscreen, a privately held company based in Brussels, Belgium, is a preclinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focusing on the discovery, development and partnering of small molecule drugs for unmet medical needs. Euroscreen is developing a pipeline of compounds targeting G Protein-Coupled Receptors (GPCRs) using over 12 years of experience in research and commercialization of this critical class of drug targets. Initially, Euroscreen was a spin-off company of the "Université Libre de Bruxelles" based on GPCRs reagents development and commercialization. Euroscreen is now developing drugs on internal targets such as CCR5 and multiple additional targets as well as several preclinical-stage collaborations with partners.
The Company has developed a broad target portfolio for licensing to biopharmaceutical companies. Such patents address GPCRs such as CCR5, Chemerin receptor, GPR43, GPR7/8, ORL1-R, FPRL2, purinergic receptors (P2Y4, P2Y11 and P2Y13) and SHIP2 for type II diabetes. Euroscreen is able to offer intellectual property rights to companies for the development of therapeutic drugs that act through these targets.
Euroscreen pursues a dual platform strategy of combining its internal drug discovery programs with its fully dedicated Custom Screening Business Unit (EuroSCREEN FAST), providing GPCR customized screening, GPCR antibody development and other services to serve biotech and pharmaceutical companies around the world. The company has research and licensing partnerships with Alchemia, Boehringer-Ingelheim, Cephalon, GNF, HGS, ICOS, Medarex, Novartis and Pfizer. (www.euroscreen.com)
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