Monday January 29
SEATTLE--(BW HealthWire)--Jan. 29, 2001--Corixa Corporation (Nasdaq:CRXA), a research- and development-based biotechnology company, today announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued the Company a patent covering certain compositions and methods for inducing an immune response using chemokine receptor peptides.
The novel compositions and methods claimed in U.S. Patent Number 6,171,590 cover the inhibition of inflammatory responses associated with autoimmune diseases, such as multiple sclerosis, by vaccinating with specific chemokine receptor protein subunits.
Chemokines are a family of proteins that act as chemical messengers in the immune system to promote the recruitment and activation of leukocytes (cells that help the body fight disease) and lymphocytes. Chemokines regulate the trafficking of tissue reactive T cells by interacting with specific chemokine receptors expressed by these cells. By vaccinating against portions of the receptor, experiments in animal models have demonstrated that immune responses can be directed toward inhibiting the interaction of a given chemokine with its receptor, thereby reducing recruitment of auto-immune T-cells and inhibiting the disease process.
The patented method of inducing an immune response against a chemokine receptor molecule involves administering to a patient an adjuvant and an immunogenic chemokine receptor polypeptide from an extracellular region of a CXCR3 chemokine receptor molecule.
"The inhibition of chemokine receptor signaling via vaccination represents another novel means of developing a new class of potential therapies for the management of multiple autoimmune diseases," said Steven Gillis, Ph.D., chairman and chief executive officer of Corixa. "While a variety of biological chemokine antagonists are being tested clinically, most of these molecules are passively administered antibodies that need to be given continually to mediate a biologically beneficial effect in autoimmune disease. Vaccination to promote a patient's own antibody and cell mediated immune responses has the potential of providing more effective and long-lasting therapeutic benefit."
Corixa is a research- and development-based biotechnology company committed to treating and preventing autoimmune diseases, cancer and infectious diseases by understanding and directing the immune system. Corixa is focused on immunotherapeutic products and has a broad technology platform enabling both fully integrated vaccine design and the use of its separate, proprietary vaccine components on a standalone basis. Corixa currently has 16 programs in clinical development and 22 programs in preclinical development, including its most advanced product candidate, Bexxar(TM), a monoclonal antibody conjugated to a radioisotope.
The company partners with numerous developers and marketers of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics, targeting products that are Powered by Corixa(TM) technology with the goal of making its potential products available to patients around the world. Corixa was founded in 1994 and is headquartered in Seattle, Wash., with additional operations in Hamilton, Mont. and Redwood City, Calif. and South San Francisco, Calif. For more information, please visit Corixa's website at www.corixa.com or call the company's investor relations information line at 877/4CORIXA or 877/426-7492.
Except for the historical information presented, certain matters discussed in this press release are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management at the time the statements are made. They are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements. Factors that could affect Corixa's actual results include, but are not limited to failure of the patented technology to prove safe or efficacious in patients and the "Factors Affecting Our Operating Results, Our Business and Our Stock Price," described in our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q/A filed on November 7, 2000 and our Registration Statement on Form S-4/A filed on November 17, 2000, copies of which are available on our Web site, www.corixa.com. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this release.
Contact: Corixa Corporation
Jim DeNike, 206/754-5716 (Investor Relations)
FitzGerald Communications Inc.
Jen Reinhard, 415/986-9500 (Media Relations)