LA JOLLA, Calif., June 11 Duska Therapeutics,Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: DSKA) ("Duska" or the "Company"), announced todaythat it has been granted an exclusive, worldwide license from Duke Universityand Johns Hopkins University to develop and commercialize their rights to aportfolio of investigational cardiovascular drugs for the treatment of heartfailure. The most advanced drug in the portfolio is expected to enter a PhaseII clinical study later this year.
The drug portfolio was developed in part by Jonathan S. Stamler, M.D.,George Barth Geller Professor of Research in Cardiovascular Diseases andProfessor of Medicine and Biochemistry at Duke University, and Joshua M. Hare,M.D., Louis Lemberg Professor of Medicine, Chief of the Division of Cardiologyand Director of the Interdisciplinary Stem Cell Institute at University ofMiami. Dr. Hare was formerly associated with Johns Hopkins University.
The Phase II candidate and all other drugs in the portfolio are designedto correct nitric oxide and redox disequilibrium in the failing heart andcardiovascular system. All have a dual mechanism of action of inhibiting thecreation of reactive oxygen radicals and concurrently providing nitric oxidein the failing heart. The therapeutic target is the ryanodine receptor, theion channel in the heart that provides the calcium necessary for the heart tobeat. The investigational drugs are believed to improve calcium cycling inthe heart by acting on the ryanodine receptor to significantly improve theefficiency of heart contractility.
According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI), thereare an estimated five million Americans that suffer from congestive heartfailure, a condition characterized by the inability of the heart toefficiently pump blood and by fluid accumulation in the lungs and othertissues. An estimated 300,000 deaths each year result from heart failure.
"The licensing of these novel heart failure drugs greatly strengthens ourpipeline by adding a Phase II candidate with blockbuster market potential,"said James S. Kuo, M.D., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Duska."Multiple sets of data obtained in preclinical and human studies suggest thatour newly licensed heart failure drugs should be safe and beneficial. Weintend to initiate a randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled Phase IIclinical trial of the lead candidate later this year to expand on the earlierclinical findings," he added.
About Duska Therapeutics, Inc.
Duska Therapeutics, Inc., in La Jolla, California, is a biotechnologycompany focused on the development of medical products based on adenosinetriphosphate and nitric oxide. Duska owns or has exclusive licensing rightsto proprietary medical products that are in various stages of development forthe treatment and diagnosis of certain cardiac arrhythmias, treatment of heartfailure, treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, and improvementof sperm motility. For more information, visithttp://www.duskatherapeutics.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaningof Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended that involverisks and uncertainties that could cause actual events or results to differmaterially from the events or results described in the forward-lookingstatements. The forward-looking statements are based on current expectations,estimates and projections made by management. Duska intends for the forward-looking statements to be covered by the safe harbor provisions for forward-looking statements. Words such as "anticipates," "expects," "intends,""plans," "believes," "seeks," "estimates," or variations of such words areintended to identify such forward-looking statements. All statements in thisrelease regarding the future outlook related to Duska are forward-lookingstatements suc