H.I.G. Capital News

OncoGenex Pharmaceuticals Announces Issuance of Key European Patent for OGX-427

BOTHELL, Wash. and VANCOUVER, British Columbia - April 14, 2011 - OncoGenex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: OGXI), today announced that the European Patent Office (EPO) has granted European Patent Number EP1545561 entitled "Oligonucleotides for Treatment of Prostate and other Cancers." The patent, licensed from The University of British Columbia, includes coverage for antisense and siRNA compositions that reduce the amount of active Heat Shock Protein 27 (Hsp27) in Hsp27 expressing cells. OGX-427 is encompassed by the granted claims.

"The issuance of this patent confirms our position as the leader in Hsp27 antisense therapeutics and provides us with a broad patent that applies well beyond particular cancers or particular compositions," said Scott Cormack, President and CEO of OncoGenex. "This patent comes as we continue to evaluate additional Phase II clinical trials and development plans for OGX-427."

Patents covering OGX-427 and related products have already issued in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, India and South Africa. A number of patent applications are still pending in the U.S. and in other jurisdictions.

About OGX-427

OGX-427 is a second-generation antisense drug that is designed to reduce production of Hsp27, a cell-survival protein. Hsp27 is expressed in a variety of malignancies and can be induced by cell stress such as chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and hormone therapy. Hsp27 production has been shown to inhibit cell death in tumor cells through a variety of mechanisms.

OGX-427 is currently being developed in prostate and bladder cancer as follows:

  • An investigator-sponsored Phase 1 clinical trial evaluating OGX-427 administered directly into the bladder in patients with superficial bladder cancer, which was initiated in August 2009.
  • An investigator-sponsored, randomized Phase 2 clinical trial evaluating OGX-427 when administered as monotherapy to patients with castrate-resistant prostate cancer. This trial will enroll approximately 72 patients and was initiated in September 2010.
  • A planned Phase 2 clinical trial of OGX-427 in approximately 180 patients with metastatic bladder cancer, which is planned to initiate in the second half of 2011.

About OncoGenex Pharmaceuticals
OncoGenex is a biopharmaceutical company committed to the development and commercialization of new cancer therapies that address treatment resistance in cancer patients. OncoGenex has a diverse oncology pipeline, with each product candidate having a distinct mechanism of action and representing a unique opportunity for cancer drug development. OncoGenex and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NASDAQ:TEVA) have entered a global collaboration and license agreement to develop and commercialize OncoGenex' lead drug candidate, custirsen. Custirsen is currently in Phase 3 clinical development as a treatment in men with metastatic castrate-resistant prostate cancer. The companies plan to begin Phase 3 development of custirsen in first-line treatment of advanced, unresectable non-small cell lung cancer in 2011. OGX-427 is in Phase 2 clinical development; SN2310 has completed a Phase 1 clinical trial; and CSP-9222 and OGX-225 are currently in pre-clinical development.

OncoGenex' Forward Looking Statements:
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, but not limited to, statements concerning our anticipated product development activities, the timing and costs of these activities and the potential benefits of our product candidates. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements. These statements are based on management's current expectations and beliefs and are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, including, among others, the risk that the Company is unable to complete its product development activities as and when planned, if at all, the risk that the Company will be unable to commercialize any product candidates in development and the other risk factors set forth in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for fiscal year 2010. The Company undertakes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements contained herein or to reflect events or circumstances occurring after the date hereof, other than as may be required by applicable law.