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Apogenix receives research grants of EUR 2.6 million as part of the Biotechnology Cluster Rhine-Neck

Heidelberg, July 29th, 2009 - Apogenix GmbH, a biopharmaceutical company developing novel drugs for malignant and inflammatory diseases, today announced that the company has received federal research grants of EUR 2.6 million as one of the companies belonging to the Biotechnology Cluster Rhine-Neckar (BioRN). In 2008, the BioRN cluster was awarded a total of EUR 40 million as one of the five most important German high-tech regions in the Top Cluster Contest of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The funds will be dedicated to two of Apogenix´ research projects in the field of cancer and inflammatory diseases.

The first program focuses on the development of an IL-4 inhibitor for the treatment of cancer – especially solid tumors which are resistant to chemotherapy and radiation. IL-4 is a cytokine expressed by cancer cells as well as cancer stem cells blocking apoptosis and thereby rendering therapies such as chemotherapy or radiation ineffective. Apogenix´ approach is based on blocking the IL-4 receptor in order to make cancer cells susceptible for treatment. The program will be coordinated by Apogenix and conducted in close collaboration with the research group of Prof Peter Krammer at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ).

The second program aims to accelerate the development of inhibitors of the CD95 ligand (CD95L), specifically APG103, for the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases. CD95 is a receptor inducing apoptosis as well as migration of, e.g. inflammatory cells. Apogenix aims to inhibit CD95 ligand, thereby preventing inflammatory processes right from the start. The research activities to explore the therapeutic potential of APG103 and additional CD95 inhibitors, and to generate preclinical data on these compounds is conducted in collaboration with the research group of Dr Ana Martin-Villalba at the German Cancer Research Center and coordinated by Apogenix.

Both programs include activities such as the construction, manufacturing and characterization of novel IL-4 and CD95L inhibitors, as well as pharmacological, pharmacokinetic, safety and mode of action studies. Apogenix´ goal is to advance the most promising IL-4 and CD95L inhibitors to clinical development.

”We are proud about receiving these two research grants,” said Dr Thomas Höger, Chief Executive Officer of Apogenix. “The grants underline the quality and the potential of the research activities of both Apogenix and its collaboration partners at the German Cancer Research Center. With these funds, we hope to accelerate our programs and provide improved treatment options for patients with cancer and chronic inflammatory diseases.”


About Apogenix

Apogenix is a biopharmaceutical company developing novel drugs based on the targeted modulation of CD95 and Interleukin-4-receptor mediated signalling pathways. These pathways play an important role in a variety of malignant and inflammatory diseases.

Apogenix is a spin-out from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), and is based in Heidelberg, Germany. Since 2005, the company has raised EUR 43 million in two financing rounds, mainly from the family of the renowned biotech investor and SAP co-founder Dietmar Hopp.

Contact information

Dr Thomas Höger

Apogenix GmbH

Im Neuenheimer Feld 584

D-69120 Heidelberg

Phone: +49 (6221) 5 86 08-0

Fax: +49 (6221) 5 86 08-10

Ines-Regina Buth


Platz vor dem Neuen Tor 2

D-10115 Berlin

Phone: + 49 (30) 23 63 27 68

Fax: +49 (30) 23 63 27 69

Publisher Contact Information:

+49 (6221) 5 86 08-0

Company profile of Apogenix
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