Healthcare Industry News:  Acute Coronary Syndrome 

Biopharmaceuticals Licensing

 News Release - September 6, 2006

Anthera Licenses Portfolio of Anti-Inflammatory Products From Eli Lilly and Company and Shionogi & Co., Ltd.

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 6 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- Anthera Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a privately held biopharmaceutical company developing anti-inflammatory drugs, announced today that it has entered into a license agreement with Eli Lilly and Company and Shionogi & Co., Ltd. under which Anthera has obtained worldwide (except for Japan) development and commercialization rights to an entire platform of clinical and preclinical inhibitors of phospholipase A2 (PLA2) developed by Lilly and Shionogi as part of their collaboration. Inflammation plays a central role in a number of life-threatening diseases including acute lung injury, atherosclerosis, and psoriasis. PLA2 consists of a family of enzymes upstream in the arachidonic acid pathway of inflammation, which is responsible for production of leukotrienes, oxidants and other pro- inflammatory mediators. A substantial evidence base specifically implicates PLA2 in each of the disease states addressed by Anthera's development programs -- the most advanced of which is an early intervention therapy in acute chest syndrome in patients with sickle cell disease.

"We are excited to have the opportunity to move this novel anti- inflammatory program forward in a new direction which leverages the extensive Lilly and Shionogi experience. Recent developments in the understanding of the biological activity of phospholipases and inflammation provide the opportunity for a renewed scientific approach with this program," stated Paul F. Truex, President and CEO of Anthera.

Anthera will initiate clinical studies later this year for the program's lead compound A-001 (previously known as LY315920/S-5920) as an early intervention therapy for acute chest syndrome in patients with underlying sickle cell disease. Worldwide, nearly 200,000 suffer from some form of this genetic blood disorder which results in an estimated 60,000 hospitalizations per year and significantly reduces life expectancy. Acute chest syndrome is a severe respiratory complication of sickle cell disease and is the leading cause of death in patients with this life threatening genetic disorder. Recent academic clinical studies in sickle cell patients have demonstrated that serum sPLA2 levels rise in advance of the acute chest syndrome, creating a unique opportunity for early intervention. "Our research to date demonstrates we can use monitoring of sPLA2 to predict which patients will develop acute chest syndrome. The next step is to use this information combined with a potent sPLA2 inhibitor to prevent the development of ACS." commented Dr. Lori Styles of the Children's Hospital and Research Center of Oakland. "Without many therapeutic options for this disease, a novel therapy to help these patients is badly needed. A-001 may represent a unique and promising approach to intervene in patients who are at risk of this life- threatening complication."

As part of this comprehensive license, Anthera has also received rights to the clinical stage oral sPLA2 inhibitor A-002 (previously known as LY333013/S- 3013) and several back up compounds in later stages of pre-clinical development. Anthera intends to announce further development of these programs in the coming months.

About Anthera Pharmaceuticals

Anthera Pharmaceuticals is a privately held pharmaceutical company committed to world-class development and commercialization of promising clinical products to address the unmet medical needs of patients with life- threatening inflammatory diseases. Anthera's lead products have the potential to address a variety of inflammatory diseases including: acute lung injury, acute respiratory distress syndrome, acute chest syndrome, Acute Coronary Syndrome, atherosclerosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and psoriasis. In order to efficiently commercialize this platform, Anthera has brought together a proven management team with extensive experience in licensing, clinical research, development, and commercialization of anti- inflammatory products. Please visit Anthera Pharmaceuticals at www.anthera.com for more information.


Source: Anthera Pharmaceuticals

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