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Bionovo Identifies and Describes ER-beta Selective Compounds for the Treatment of Vaginal Dryness

Tuesday, April 15, 2008 General News J E 4
EMERYVILLE, Calif., April 14 Bionovo, Inc.(Nasdaq: BNVI) will present seminal information on a new drug candidate forthe treatment of vaginal dryness at the 7th Annual Oxford InternationalConference on the Science of Botanicals & American Society of Pharmacognosy4th Interim Meeting, April 12-16, 2008. Scott Baggett, Ph.D., a member ofBionovo's chemistry team, will present the structural elucidation of activeestrogen receptor beta selective compounds from VG101, Bionovo's drugcandidate for vaginal atrophy. This structural elucidation is key to thedevelopment of the drug candidate's mechanism of action and intellectualproperty protection.

The poster will describe the isolation and identification of a natural,selective estrogen receptor (ER) beta compound from VG101 and three syntheticderivatives. The presentation will detail the complete analysis of thesecompounds by Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Liquid Chromatography withMass Spectrometry Detection (LC/MS) analysis.

Dr. Rick Staub, Director of Chemistry at Bionovo stated, "This is anexcellent example of our multidisciplinary approach to drug development. Weintegrate pharmacognosy, synthetic chemistry and cutting edge, physiologicallyrelevant, biological assays to isolate and develop safe and efficaciouspharmaceuticals. Here, we have isolated an isoflavonoid from VG101 andsynthesized three analogues displaying selective estrogen receptor betaactivity, which is the foundation of this drug candidate."

"More than 45% of menopausal women experience vaginal dryness, which,untreated, can last for the rest of their lives," said Isaac Cohen, Bionovo'sChairman and CEO. "It has been recently elucidated in independent studies thatpain and physical discomfort are the major reason menopausal women refrainfrom sexual activity. VG101 may provide a safe and effective treatment ofvaginal dryness for these women, and significantly improve their quality oflife and reproductive health. We plan to advance this drug into clinicaltesting later this year."

The conference will be held at The National Center for Natural ProductsResearch (NCNPR) within the School of Pharmacy at The University ofMississippi.

About the American Society of Pharmacognosy

The American Society of Pharmacognosy was founded in 1959 as an outgrowthof the Plant Science Seminar. The Society represents more than 1,000researchers, scientists and others worldwide who are dedicated to thepromotion and development of pharmacognosy and to all aspects of thosesciences that involve natural products.

About VG101

VG101 is a topical intravaginal drug designed for the treatment of vaginalatrophy and dryness in menopausal women. VG101 is a novel estrogen receptorbeta selective agonist and unlike currently available hormone therapies, doesnot activate the estrogen receptor alpha, known to be implicated in tumorformation. Phase 1/2 clinical testing of VG101, under the directorship ofDr. Deborah Grady, will commence later this year.

About Bionovo, Inc.

Bionovo is a pharmaceutical company focused on the discovery anddevelopment of safe and effective treatments for women's health and cancer,markets with significant unmet needs and billions in potential annual revenue.The company applies its expertise in the biology of menopause and cancer todesign new drugs derived from botanical sources which have novel mechanisms ofaction. Based on the results of early and mid-stage clinical trials, Bionovobelieves they have discovered new classes of drug candidates within their richpipeline with the potential to be leaders in their markets. Bionovo isheadquartered in Emeryville, California and is traded on the NASDAQ CapitalMarket under the symbol, BNVI. For more information about Bionovo and itsprograms, visit: http://www.bionovo.com.

SOURCE Bionovo, Inc.


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