BioWa, Inc.

BioWa, Inc. Licenses Anti IL-5 Receptor Antibody from Kyowa Hakko Kogyo Co., Ltd.

    Princeton, New Jersey (ots/PRNewswire) - BioWa announced today that it has successfully licensed from Kyowa Hakko Kogyo Co., Ltd. (Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, Fukuoka, Sapporo: 4151), its parent company, the exclusive worldwide rights, except Asia, to develop and commercialize anti IL-5 receptor antibody, a potential new asthma treatment.

    Under the terms of the agreement, BioWa expects to develop and commercialize anti IL-5 receptor antibody, which is currently in late pre-clinical development, in the US and Europe. In return, Kyowa Hakko Kogyo Co. has an option to develop and commercialize the product in Asia and will be responsible for all development activities and costs. Under the terms of the agreement, BioWa retains all rights to anti IL-5 receptor antibody in non-Asia countries. Each party has the right to use pre-clinical and clinical data generated by the other party for developing anti IL-5 receptor antibody in their respective territories.

    The anti IL-5 receptor antibody is designed using BioWa's Potelligent(TM) Technology and will be the first antibody of the BioWa pipeline to enter human trials. "Obtaining the development and commercialization rights to anti IL-5 receptor antibody is a significant step for BioWa's technology platform, demonstrating our commitment to building a pipeline of Antigen Dependent Cellular Cytotoxicity (ADCC) enhanced therapeutic products, and positions BioWa as a key player in asthma therapeutics," said Dr. Nobuo Hanai, President and CEO of BioWa. "We believe that ADCC enhancement of antibodies will overcome many existing problems of antibody therapeutics today. We are pursuing the discovery and development of high value proprietary therapeutic products through the use of Potelligent(TM), our core technology."

    About Potelligent(TM) Technology

    The human body has an excellent self-defense mechanism, the immune system where antibodies are created to protect the body from diseases when foreign organisms like pathogenic bacteria enter the body. Therapeutic antibodies are based on or are designed to make full use of the body's own defense activity.

    ADCC activity is the most critical function of the human immune system. With this activity, white blood cells such as NK cells and monocytes kill target cells like cancer cells. ADCC activity is the major anticancer mechanism of already launched therapeutic antibodies on the market today. Enhancing this activity is in the spotlight worldwide as the next-generation antibody technology.

    Potelligent(TM) Technology involves the complete elimination of fucose from the carbohydrate structure of an antibody. Potelligent(TM) derived antibodies enhance antibody performance overall. Studies have shown that Potelligent(TM) cells enhance ADCC up to 100 fold in vitro. The benefits of Potelligent(TM) derived antibodies are greater tumor cell killing activity than with conventional antibodies, potential for an expanded base of responding patients, reduced side effects with decreased dose requirements, and no change in key clinical parameters, i.e., selectivity, pharmacokinetics , and immunogenicity. Research shows that Potelligent(TM) Technology dramatically enhances binding affinity to the Fc receptor.

    Potelligent(TM) Technology is an easy fit with conventional production and purification methods. Due to the effectiveness of the technology, production costs and capacity requirements decrease.

    About anti IL-5 receptor antibody

    The IL-5 receptor is expressed predominantly on the surface of a class of white blood cells known as eosinophils. These are one of several types of white blood cells that act to combat infection. However, in a more negative action, eosinophils have been implicated as the major cause of problems in the lung associated with non-allergic asthma. The anti IL-5 receptor antibody is being developed to reverse the debilitating effects of non-allergic asthma by acting to eliminate eosinophils that accumulate locally in the lung. Treatment with the antibody is expected to reduce if not eliminate the typical symptoms (coughing, shortness of breath, etc.) associated with asthma.

    About Non-Allergic Asthma

    Currently there is no effective treatment for non-allergic asthma sufferers. The potential for anti IL-5 receptor antibody is expected to gross over US$500M worldwide peak sales. The number of patients affected by asthma is growing significantly. The asthma market is predicted to increase from the current US$12B to over US$19B worldwide by year 2009.

    About BioWa, Inc.

    BioWa is a wholly owned subsidiary of Kyowa Hakko Kogyo Co., Ltd., Japan's leading pharmaceutical and largest biotech company. BioWa is the exclusive worldwide licensor of Potelligent(TM) Technology. Potelligent(TM) Technology creates high antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) monoclonal antibodies. ADCC is a critical function of the immune system that enhances the ability of antibodies to kill tumor cells. The enhancement of ADCC is seen up to 100 fold in vitro. BioWa is currently developing ADCC enhanced monoclonal antibody-based therapeutics to fight cancer, asthma and other life-threatening and debilitating diseases and both BioWa and Kyowa have Potelligent(TM) antibody products in various clinical stages. BioWa creates and develops enhanced ADCC antibodies for itself and others, offering a full range of antibody discovery and development capabilities. For more information about BioWa visit its web site at http://www.biowa.com.

    Potelligent(TM) is the registered trademark of Kyowa Hakko Kogyo Co., Ltd. All rights are reserved.

    Web site: http://www.biowa.com

ots Originaltext: BioWa, Inc.
Im Internet recherchierbar: http://www.presseportal.ch

Contact:
Nobuo Hanai, Ph.D., President and CEO of BioWa, +1-609-580-7500,
x7501 or Martina Molsbergen, Senior Director, Business Development,
BioWa, +1-609-580-7500, x7382



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