1.7 Million Dollars Grant Towards Development of Theratechnologies’ Targeted Oncology
MONTREAL, Oct. 04, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Theratechnologies Inc. (Theratechnologies) (TSX: TH) is pleased to announce that the Canadian Cancer Society and the Government of Quebec, through the Consortium Québécois sur la découverte du médicament (CQDM), will contribute to a grant totaling 1.7 million dollars to l’Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) as part of the overall investment made by Theratechnologies towards the development of its targeted oncology platform.
The funds have been earmarked for work conducted by Dr Borhane Annabi at the Molecular Oncology Laboratory of the UQAM. Dr Annabi and his team will focus their efforts on the development of the targeted oncology platform in triple-negative breast cancer.
“The contribution of the Canadian Cancer Society and the CQDM is a concrete demonstration of the great interest our targeted oncology platform is creating. Their support gives us even more reason to be enthusiastic about this unique technology. We still aim to initiate clinical trials in human subjects by the end of 2020,” said Luc Tanguay, President and Chief Executive Officer, Theratechnologies.
There is still currently a significant unmet need for the treatment of many cancer types, due to very serious side-effects associated with currently available agents.
Theratechnologies’ proprietary technology uses peptides to specifically target sortilin receptors, which are overexpressed on cancer cells. Commonly used cytotoxic agents are attached to the peptides which bind to the targeted receptors. As a cellular mechanism known as endocytosis occurs, the targeted receptors are internalized along with the peptide conjugate. In vitro and in vivo study results obtained so far show that this targeted approach significantly reduces the accumulation of cytotoxic agents in healthy cells, thereby potentially reducing side effects associated to chemotherapy.
“The CCS will invest in this project a portion of the funds collected during the CIBC Run for the Cure. In total, we will invest approximately $11,500,000 over the next few years towards the development of innovative drugs and to increase the survival rate of women dealing with an aggressive and hard to treat breast cancer,” said Denis Lalonde, Executive Director, CCS - Quebec. “The partnership between the CCS and the CQDM and biotech companies like Theratechnologies is a great success and a model of research financing which will benefit women in Quebec and Canada, added Mr. Lalonde.”
“CQDM is very pleased to support this project which should bring us closer to finding a cure for the most aggressive form of breast cancer. We are relying on the world-class innovative spirit and expertise of Professor Annabi and Theratechnologies to bring this new drug from bench to bedside as quickly as possible”, said Diane Gosselin, President and CEO of CQDM.
As previously announced, the acquisition cost of Theratechnologies’ proprietary targeted oncology platform from Katana Biopharma Inc. will be adjusted to reflect the grant of this subsidy.
Theratechnologies (TSX: TH) is a commercial-stage biopharmaceutical company addressing unmet medical needs by bringing to market specialized therapies for people with orphan medical conditions, including those living with HIV. Further information about Theratechnologies is available on the Company's website at www.theratech.com and on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
About the CQDM
CQDM is a biopharma-based research consortium created in 2008 with the mission to fund the development of innovative technologies to accelerate drug discovery and development. Its business model is based on a collaborative approach bringing together world-leading pharmaceutical organizations, Canadian biotech companies as well as the Canadian and Quebec governments who share the costs of the research. CQDM uses this leverage to reduce the risks inherent to early-stage biopharmaceutical research. In doing so, CQDM bridges the funding gap needed to drive innovation across the academic and private sectors, especially where early-stage research is concerned. Over the last 10 years, CQDM has benefited from the contribution of 13 industrial members: Merck, Pfizer, AstraZeneca as founding members as well as Boehringer Ingelheim, Eli Lilly Canada, GlaxoSmithKline, Janssen, Novartis Pharma Canada, Roche, Sanofi Canada, Servier, Takeda and now Amgen. CQDM also received contributions from Quebec’s Ministry of Economy and Innovation (MEI) and from the Government of Canada under the Business-Led Networks of Centres of Excellence Program (BL-NCE). Since 2008, CQDM has supported the development of 77 outstanding innovative technologies totaling $93M in funding. These R&D projects carried out by 1,200 scientists from 83 different research institutions (40 public and 43 private) across Canada, have generated numerous economic benefits for all the stakeholders of the life science ecosystem. For more information: http://www.cqdm.org/en.
About the Canadian Cancer Society
The Canadian Cancer Society is a national, community-based organization of volunteers whose mission is the eradication of cancer and the enhancement of the quality of life of people living with cancer. To learn more about cancer, please visit our website at www.cancer.ca or call our free and bilingual Cancer Information Service line at
1 888 939-3333.
This press release contains forward-looking statements and forward-looking information, or, collectively, forward-looking statements, within the meaning of applicable securities laws, that are based on our management’s beliefs and assumptions and on information currently available to our management. You can identify forward-looking statements by terms such as "may", "will", "should", "could", “would”, "outlook", "believe", "plan", "envisage", "anticipate", "expect" and "estimate", or the negatives of these terms, or variations of them. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the potential of our oncology platform, the timing to initiate clinical trials and the reduction of side effects associated with chemotherapy treatments.
Forward-looking statements are based upon a number of assumptions and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond Theratechnologies’ control that could cause actual results to differ materially from those that are disclosed in or implied by such forward-looking information. These assumptions include but are not limited to, the following: our research and development activities on our oncology platform will generate positive results, no delay will be incurred in connection with the initiation of our clinical trials in human subjects and in vitro and in vivo results obtained thus far will be similar or better in humans.
The risks and uncertainties include, among others, the risk that results obtained from our research and development activities are unsatisfactory resulting in delays in pursuing development work or in a halt of our development program on this platform, that there are delays in beginning clinical trials in humans, and that Dr Annabi or his team becomes unavailable to pursue development work on our oncology platform.
We refer potential investors to the "Risk Factors" section of our annual information form dated February 20, 2019 for additional risks regarding the conduct of our business and Theratechnologies. The reader is cautioned to consider these and other risks and uncertainties carefully and not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements reflect current expectations regarding future events and speak only as of the date of this press release and represent our expectations as of that date.
We undertake no obligation to update or revise the information contained in this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events or circumstances or otherwise, except as may be required by applicable law.
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