Healthcare Industry News: GPC Biotech
News Release - February 21, 2007
GPC Biotech Launches Expanded Access Program for Oncology Drug Candidate Satraplatin in the U.S.MARTINSRIED/MUNICH, Germany, WALTHAM, Mass. and PRINCETON, N.J., Feb. 21 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- GPC Biotech AG (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: GPC; TecDAX index; Nasdaq: GPCB) today announced that the Company has launched the Satraplatin Expanded Rapid Access protocol (SPERA) in the U.S. Expanded Access Programs (EAPs) are intended to give patients access to investigational drugs to treat serious or life-threatening diseases or conditions for which there are no adequate therapies available. Under the SPERA program, satraplatin will be provided to patients free of charge.
"There is an important medical need for treatments for hormone-refractory prostate cancer patients whose first-line chemotherapy has failed," said Martine George, M.D., Senior Vice President, Clinical Development, GPC Biotech. "We look forward to working with clinicians to make satraplatin available through the SPERA program to these patients who currently have no approved treatment options for their disease."
U.S. physicians interested in receiving more information about SPERA can contact 1-800-349-8086 or www.speratrial.com.
About Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men in the U.S. and Europe. Approximately 219,000 men in the U.S. are expected to be diagnosed with the disease in 2007, and over 27,000 men are expected to die from the disease. In the European Union, over 200,000 new cases are expected to be diagnosed, and over 60,000 patients are expected to die each year. Since the incidence of prostate cancer increases with age, the aging of the overall population is expected to further increase the number of prostate cancer patients.
Most patients diagnosed with prostate cancer initially receive surgery or radiation therapy, and some of these patients are cured. For many others, though, the disease recurs. At this point, the recurrent disease is treated with hormone therapy, and most patients initially respond well to this treatment. Eventually, however, the tumor cells become resistant to the hormones - or "hormone-refractory" - and the tumor again progresses. Increasingly, chemotherapy is being used as an effective first-line treatment for HRPC. However, it is not a cure, and so this is creating a need for effective therapeutic options for these patients once they have progressed.
Satraplatin, an investigational drug, is a member of the platinum family of compounds. Over the past two decades, platinum-based drugs have become a critical part of modern chemotherapy treatments and are used to treat a wide variety of cancers. Unlike the platinum drugs currently on the market, all of which require intravenous administration, satraplatin is an orally bioavailable compound and is given as capsules that patients can take at home.
In September 2006, GPC Biotech announced topline results for the double- blinded, randomized satraplatin Phase 3 registrational trial, the SPARC trial (Satraplatin and Prednisone Against Refractory Cancer). The trial is evaluating satraplatin plus prednisone versus placebo plus prednisone as a second-line treatment in 950 patients with hormone-refractory prostate cancer. GPC Biotech has a co-development and license agreement with Pharmion GmbH, a wholly owned subsidiary of Pharmion Corporation, under which Pharmion has been granted exclusive commercialization rights to satraplatin for Europe and certain other territories.
Satraplatin has been studied in clinical trials involving a range of tumors. Trials evaluating the effects of satraplatin in combination with radiation therapy, in combination with other cancer therapies and in a number of cancer types are underway or planned. GPC Biotech in-licensed satraplatin from Spectrum Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in 2002. Additional information on satraplatin can be found in the Anticancer Programs section of the Company's Web site at www.gpc-biotech.com.
GPC Biotech AG is a publicly traded biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing new anticancer drugs. GPC Biotech's lead product candidate - satraplatin - is an oral platinum-based compound that is being evaluated as a second-line chemotherapy treatment in hormone-refractory prostate cancer. The U.S. FDA has granted fast track designation to satraplatin for this indication, and the rolling NDA submission process for this compound has been completed. GPC Biotech is also developing a monoclonal antibody with a novel mechanism-of-action against a variety of lymphoid tumors, currently in Phase 1 clinical development, and has ongoing drug development and discovery programs that leverage its expertise in kinase inhibitors. GPC Biotech AG is headquartered in Martinsried/Munich (Germany), and its wholly owned U.S. subsidiary has sites in Waltham, Massachusetts and Princeton, New Jersey. For additional information, please visit GPC Biotech's Web site at www.gpc-biotech.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements, which express the current beliefs and expectations of the management of GPC Biotech AG. Such statements are based on current expectations and are subject to risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control, that could cause future results, performance or achievements to differ significantly from the results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Actual results could differ materially depending on a number of factors, and we caution investors not to place undue reliance on the forward- looking statements contained in this press release. In particular, additional information relating to the safety, efficacy or tolerability of satraplatin may be discovered upon further analysis of data from the SPARC trial or analysis of additional data from other ongoing clinical trials for satraplatin. Furthermore, even if these results are confirmed upon full analysis of the trial, we cannot guarantee that satraplatin will be approved for marketing in a timely manner, if at all, by regulatory authorities nor that, if marketed, satraplatin will be a successful commercial product. We direct you to GPC Biotech's Annual Report on Form 20-F for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2005 and other reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for additional details on the important factors that may affect the future results, performance and achievements of GPC Biotech. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date on which they are made and GPC Biotech does not undertake any obligation to update these forward- looking statements, even if new information becomes available in the future.
The scientific information discussed in this press release related to satraplatin is preliminary and investigative. Satraplatin has not yet been approved by the FDA in the U.S., the EMEA in Europe or any other regulatory authority and no conclusions can or should be drawn regarding its safety or effectiveness. Only the relevant regulatory authorities can determine whether satraplatin is safe and effective for the use(s) being investigated.
Source: GPC Biotech
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