SEATTLE, Aug. 22 Systems Medicine, LLC (SM), awholly-owned subsidiary of Cell Therapeutics, Inc. (CTI)(Nasdaq and MTAX: CTIC), today announced they have entered into a CooperativeResearch and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the National Cancer Institute(NCI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The goal of this CRADA is todevelop patented products for the treatment of patients with cancer --specifically, human monoclonal antibodies (hmAbs), peptides, and smallmolecules that affect signal transduction through the insulin-like growthfactor (IGF) receptor type I (IGF-IR) and the insulin receptor (IR).
Under terms of the CRADA, which is effective for five years beginning July31, 2007, SM will have an exclusive option to elect an exclusive or non-exclusive commercialization license to any inventions developed under theCRADA. Scientists at SM and CTI will work with scientists at the ProteinInteraction Group at the NCI campus in Frederick, Maryland.
"This is important research being conducted by leaders in the field at NCIthat may offer advantages over other therapeutics directed at this target. Ifsuccessful, CTI would have exclusive rights to negotiate with NIH for aproduct that targets the ligand that activates the IGF receptor, unlikecurrent approaches to IGF inhibition that target the receptor directly," saidJames A. Bianco, M.D., President and CEO of Cell Therapeutics, Inc. "This isanother exciting addition to several early stage targeted therapies we areevaluating including SRC inhibitors and bisplatinates."
Daniel D. Von Hoff, M.D., Chief Medical Advisor to SM, Physician-in-Chiefand Director of the Clinical Translational Research Division at theTranslational Genomics Research Institute in Phoenix, Arizona and head ofCTI's strategic product portfolio committee noted that, "the IGF system playsan important role in many physiological processes, especially in pathologicalconditions such as cancer. We were impressed with the data, the results andthe potential advantages of the totally human antibody to IGF-II initiallyreported by Dr. Dimitrov in the January 2006 issue of Molecular CancerTherapeutics. We contacted Dr. Dimitrov, evaluated the opportunity and enteredinto this CRADA."
Dimiter S. Dimitrov, Ph.D., NCI principal investigator for the CRADA andhead of the Protein Interaction Group of the CCR Nanobiology Program at theNCI's Center for Cancer Research, will lead the research effort. Dimitrov'sgroup is focused on the development of fully human monoclonal antibodiestargeting the IGF pathway and system in the search for novel cancertherapeutics. Recently published data and ongoing research and developmentvalidate IGF as a promising target for the treatment of patients with cancer.Dimitrov's laboratory has filed patent applications for a panel of novel humanantibodies against components of the IGF system, including IGF-II and IGF-I.
"Recently several antibodies targeting IGF-IR have entered clinicaltrials. Antibodies that target only the receptor could bind to normal cellsexpressing the receptor with possible toxic effects. Thus, our initial focuswill be on antibodies against the ligands IGF-I and IGF-II that inhibitinteraction with IGF-IR," said Jack W. Singer, M.D., Chief Medical Officer atCTI. "Early data has been submitted from this CRADA research for presentationat the upcoming AACR-NCI-EORTC meeting in October."
About Cell Therapeutics, Inc.
Headquartered in Seattle, CTI is a biopharmaceutical company committed todeveloping an integrated portfolio of oncology products aimed at making cancermore treatable. For additional information, please visithttp://www.cticseattle.com.
About Systems Medicine (SM)
In July 2007, CTI acquired SM, a privately held oncology company, in astock for stock merger. Systems Medicine (SM) applies a systems biologyapproach to drug development, combining p