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European Patent Office to Issue Patent to Phyton Biotech Covering Methods of Making Taxanes -- Compounds Useful in Cancer Treatment.

AHRENSBURG, Germany -- Phyton Biotech GmbH, a world leader in plant cell culture technology, reports that the European Patent Office has announced its intention to grant a European patent to Phyton covering methods of producing taxanes such as paclitaxel.

Paclitaxel, the active ingredient in Bristol-Myers Squibb's TAXOL([R]), is useful in the treatment of breast, ovarian, lung, and other forms of cancer. Phyton produces paclitaxel broth for a major pharmaceutical company under a long-term supply agreement. Phyton's paclitaxel is produced in plant cell culture by a proprietary method developed as an alternative to harvesting tree bark or plantations as a taxane source.

The patent will broadly cover methods for producing commercial levels of taxanes such as paclitaxel by cultivating cells of Taxus chinensis, a species of the yew tree, in plant cell culture containing effective concentrations of silver and an auxin. The patent, which will expand Phyton's existing IP portfolio, protects Phyton's European production of paclitaxel via its plant cell culture processes. Also, the patent confirms Phyton's exclusive rights to produce paclitaxel pursuant to this process and may be asserted against any third party using the patented process in Europe, or importing products made by the patented process into Europe.

Dr. Harald Heckenmuller, General Manager of Phyton Biotech GmbH, commented: "We are pleased that the European Patent Office recognizes Phyton's innovative approach for producing commercial levels of anticancer compounds such as paclitaxel. The announced intention of the European Patent Office will further enhance our existing IP portfolio and affirms our position as the only commercial source in Europe for taxanes such as paclitaxel via plant cell fermentation. We are determined to effectively defend this position."

About Phyton Biotech GmbH

Phyton Biotech GmbH is a wholly owned subsidiary of DFB Pharmaceuticals, Inc. The subsidiary is a world leader in proprietary plant cell culture technology for research and commercial production of API's. Its manufacturing facility, located in Ahrensburg, Germany, is the world's largest cGMP plant cell culture facility with bioreactors up to 75m3. It is specifically designed to grow plant cells in culture via patented processes, carry out all related QA/QC activities, and conduct development work such as pre-fermentation and scale up. For more information about Phyton Biotech, visit: www.phytonbiotech.com.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Oct 12, 2009
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