New York (ots/PRNewswire) -
- Drug Class Developed at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson
Callisto Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Amex: KAL; FWB:CA4), a developer
of new drug treatments in the fight against cancer and other major
health threats, has announced that it signed an agreement with The
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center ("M.D. Anderson" or
"MDACC") for the licensing of a new class of cancer drugs called
Degrasyns for development as anti-cancer agents. The novel
anti-cancer activity of these analogs, developed by scientists at M.
D. Anderson, relates to their ability to selectively degrade key
proteins that are involved in tumor cell proliferation and survival.
So far this degradation appears to be specific for C-MYC, BCR-ABL and
JAK2, all important targets for a wide range of important tumors.
"We are very excited about what the M. D. Anderson researchers
have been able to discover and achieve. This class of Degrasyns
represents a potential new important mechanism to induce tumor cell
death," said Callisto Pharmaceuticals Executive Vice President Dr.
Donald H. Picker. "We plan to work closely with scientists at M. D.
Anderson in the next year to bring forward a pre-clinical candidate
for development in the clinic."
"The licensing of the Degrasyn class from M. D. Anderson is a
clear demonstration of Callisto's commitment to developing a robust
portfolio of anti-cancer drugs," said Gabriele M. Cerrone, Chairman
of Callisto Pharmaceuticals, Inc. "Acquisition of the license for the
Degrasyn drug candidates transforms Callisto from a hematologic
focused cancer company to the much larger field of solid tumors. The
Degrasyn compounds are designed to target a number of solid tumor
types, including head and neck tumors, for which there currently
exist limited effective drug treatment options."
"We are excited about the discovery of this novel class of drugs,"
said Dr. Moshe Talpaz, one of the inventors and a professor of
Experimental Therapeutics at M. D. Anderson. "What we are most
excited about is this novel mechanism that causes the degradation of
important cancer causing and cancer driving proteins in a way that
appears to be specific for these few key targets. It is our priority
to get one of these compounds into the clinic as soon as possible."
About The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center
The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center is one of the
world's most respected centers devoted exclusively to cancer patient
care, research, education and prevention. M. D. Anderson is ranked as
the nation's top cancer hospital in U.S. News & World Report's
"America's Best Hospitals" survey for four of the past six years, and
now ranks first in the number of grants awarded and total amount of
grants given by the National Cancer Institute. The research program
at M. D. Anderson is considered one of the most productive efforts in
the world aimed solely at cancer.
About Callisto Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Callisto is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development
of new drugs to treat various forms of cancer and other serious
afflictions. Callisto's drug candidates in development currently
include anti-cancer agents in clinical development, in addition to
drugs for a range of other significant health care market segments,
including biodefense. One of the Company's lead drug candidates,
L-Annamycin, is being developed as a treatment for forms of relapsed
leukemia, a currently incurable blood cancer. Callisto initiated a
clinical trial of L-Annamycin in adult relapsed acute lymphocytic
leukemia patients in 4Q 2005. L-Annamycin, a new compound from the
anthracycline family of proven anti-cancer drugs, has a novel
therapeutic profile, including activity against resistant diseases
and significantly reduced cardiotoxicity, or damage to the heart,
compared to currently available drug alternatives. Another
anti-cancer drug, Atiprimod, is in development to treat relapsed
multiple myeloma, a blood cancer. Atiprimod has entered Phase I/IIa
human clinical trials in relapsed multiple myeloma patients. Callisto
also has drugs in pre-clinical development for gastro-intestinal
inflammation, and a program focused on the development of a drug to
protect against Staphylococcus and Streptococcus biowarfare agents.
Callisto has exclusive worldwide licenses from AnorMED Inc. and M.D.
Anderson Cancer Center to develop, manufacture, use and sell
Atiprimod and L-Annamycin, respectively. For investor-specific
information about Callisto, including recent news and stock price
data, please visit http://www.trilogy-capital.com/tcp/callisto/. For
an Investor Fact Sheet about Callisto, please visit
http://www.trilogy-capital.com/tcp/callisto/factsheet.html. To view
an informational presentation of the Company's development pipeline
of drug candidates, visit
is also listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange under the ticker
symbol CA4. For additional information, visit
Certain statements made in this press release are forward-looking.
Such statements are indicated by words such as "expect," "should,"
"anticipate" and similar words indicating uncertainty in facts and
figures. Although Callisto believes that the expectations reflected
in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, it can give no
assurance that such expectations reflected in such forward-looking
statements will prove to be correct. As discussed in the Callisto
Pharmaceuticals Annual Report on Form 10-K/A for the year ended
December 31, 2004, and other periodic reports, as filed with the
Securities and Exchange Commission, actual results could differ
materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements as
a result of the following factors, among others: uncertainties
associated with product development, the risk that products that
appeared promising in early clinical trials do not demonstrate
efficacy in larger-scale clinical trials, the risk that Callisto will
not obtain approval to market its products, the risks associated with
dependence upon key personnel and the need for additional financing.
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Dan D'Agostino of Callisto Pharmaceuticals, Inc., +1-212-297-0010
ext. 227, email@example.com; or Paul Karon of Trilogy
Capital Partners, Inc., (Investor Relations), +1-800-592-6067,
firstname.lastname@example.org, for Callisto Pharmaceuticals, Inc.