CLINICAL TRIAL STARTS FOR TREATMENT OF PNT ALLERGY

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Tanox Announces Start of Anti-IgE Clinical Trial in Severe Peanut Allergy

HOUSTON, July 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Tanox, Inc. today announced the start of a Phase I/II clinical trial in severe peanut allergy with Hu-901, an anti-IgE monoclonal antibody produced by Tanox. Tanox is independently evaluating Hu-901 for the treatment of IgE-mediated allergic diseases outside the current clinical focus of rhuMab-E25 anti-IgE, which is being jointly developed in collaboration with Genentech and Novartis.

The Phase I/II trial will take place under an Investigational New Drug Application filed by Tanox with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Volunteers for the study will have a history of severe allergic reactions to peanuts. About 2% of U.S. adults report that they have had reactions to peanuts or other nuts, and peanut allergies are the most common cause of food-related anaphylaxis and death.

"We have long believed that the potential of anti-IgE should be explored beyond the respiratory allergies, allergic rhinitis and allergic asthma," said Dr. Nancy Chang, President of Tanox, Inc. "Although our initial idea was to test Hu-901 first in atopic dermatitis, our clinical consultants suggested allergic reactions to peanuts because of the life-threatening risk to patients with anaphylactic allergic reactions to peanuts. We believe our study will provide important insight into the usefulness of Hu-901 anti-IgE in treating food allergy, as well as other IgE-mediated allergic diseases".

Different forms of peanuts are hidden in many foods, including candy and baked goods, and therefore it is very difficult to avoid eating peanuts. "Many people who have severe allergic reactions to peanuts die in restaurants or on the way to the hospital," said Dr. Donald Leung, Professor and Head of the Division of Pediatric Allergy-Immunology, the National Jewish Medical and Research Center, Denver, Colorado, one of the investigators for the study. "We have wanted to do a trial with anti-IgE in peanut allergic patients for a long time, to study its ability to prevent or reduce reactions to ingested allergens and to see if it will help people tolerate accidental ingestion of a small amount of peanuts. We are pleased that Tanox is willing to sponsor this study".

During the study, individuals who have allergic reactions to peanut will be treated with Hu-901 and will then be tested to see if their sensitivity to peanut has been reduced and they can eat more peanuts before a reaction occurs. "If anti-IgE reduces allergic reactions to peanuts," said Dr. Hugh Sampson, Professor, Department of Pediatric, Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York City, "it will be important to do further studies to investigate its potential benefit for patients with allergic reactions due to multiple foods, drugs or inhaled allergens." Dr. Sampson is also an investigator in the study.

Tanox, Inc., incorporated in 1986, is a biotechnology research and development company in Houston, Texas. Tanox is a leader in the development of novel monoclonal antibody based treatments for diseases involving or affecting the human immune system. Tanox holds patents around the world covering the use of anti-IgE antibodies for the treatment of IgE-mediated diseases. Tanox is collaborating in the development of two anti-IgE antibodies with Novartis Pharma AG and Genentech, Inc., with the lead product from such collaboration, rhuMab-E25, now in late Phase III clinical trials. Tanox has additional innovative monoclonal antibodies in development for treatment of inflammatory and infectious diseases and cancer. Additional information about Tanox is available at [url="http://www.tanox.com."]http://www.tanox.com.[/url]

SOURCE Tanox, Inc. Web Site: [url="http://www.tanox.com"]http://www.tanox.com[/url]

On Jul 14, 1999

Brenda,

Thanks so much for this post. It really picked me up, as I have had a not so good day today.

Stay Safe, Deb

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