April 25, 2008
VANCOUVER, Canada— iCo Therapeutics Inc. (TSX-V: ICO) announces that the company’s Diabetic Macular Edema (DME) candidate, “iCo-007”, will be presented by Dr. Peter Hnik in a poster session at the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology Annual Meeting (ARVO).
The poster, “iCo-007, a VEGF “+” Agent for the Potential Treatment of Diabetic Macular Edema and Diabetic Retinopathy”, can be viewed during the Macular Edema in Diabetes poster session on Tuesday, Apr 29, 2008 from 3:00 PM – 4:45 PM in Hall B/C of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention Center. Dr. Peter Hnik, iCo Therapeutics’ Chief Medical Officer, will be in attendance to respond to questions.
Designed and discovered by ISIS Pharmaceuticals Inc., (NASDAQ: ISIS), iCo-007 is a second-generation antisense inhibitor targeting c-Raf kinase mRNA for the treatment of DME and Diabetic Retinopathy. iCo licensed the worldwide exclusive rights to all therapeutic applications of iCo-007 from ISIS in 2005.
“DME is an unmet medical need representing vast market potential for novel compounds such as iCo-007″, said Andrew Rae, iCo’s President & CEO. “It is our hope that iCo-007’s ongoing Phase I trial in DME patients will represent a vital step in developing a treatment for this increasingly prevalent disease.”
iCo-007 is expected to decrease swelling in the retina and related visual impairment by decreasing the signaling of multiple growth factors, including VEGF, IGF, bFGF, EPO and HGF that signal through the c-Raf kinase / MAP kinase pathway. iCo-007 is currently in an open label, dose escalating Phase I clinical trial in DME patients. The primary endpoint of the trial is safety, with visual acuity and measures of retinal thickness serving as secondary endpoints. iCo-007 may also be a potential treatment for certain oncology indications, as c-Raf kinase is the predominant Raf isoform responsible for regulating cellular growth in ovarian cancer.
About Diabetic Macular Edema
There are currently no approved therapeutics for DME, the leading cause of blindness in working age adults. DME currently affects about 1.6 million people in the U.S. alone, a number that is expected to grow as Diabetes is forecast to increase by almost 50% in the US by 2025.
About iCo Therapeutics Inc.
iCo Therapeutics Inc. is a Vancouver-based development based company focused on in-licensing drugs with clinical history redosing or reformulating for new or expanded indications. iCo has exclusive worldwide rights to three products. iCo-007, a second generation antisense candidate licensed from Isis Pharmaceuticals, is currently in a Phase I trial in Diabetic Macular Edema patients with compelling early data. iCo-008 is a human monoclonal antibody targeting eotaxin-1 with Phase II clinical history, licensed from AstraZeneca/MedImmune. iCo-009 is a proprietary oral formulation of amphotericin B licensed from the University of British Columbia. To date, iCo has reported positive preclinical results for iCo-009. iCo Therapeutics trades on the TSX-Venture exchange under the symbol “ICO”. For more information, visit the company website at: http://www.icotherapeutics.com
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Forward Looking Statements
Certain statements 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 iCo Therapeutics’ current beliefs as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to iCo Therapeutics 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 iCo Therapeutics in its public securities filings; actual events may differ materially from current expectations. iCo Therapeutics disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.