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STRESSGEN AWARDED FEDERAL R & D GRANT AIMED AT STRESS PROTEIN-BASED THERAPEUTICS

 VICTORIA, British Columbia, Jan. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- StressGen Biotechnologies Corp. (Vancouver: SSB), based here, today announced it was awarded $323,675 (CDN) by the Canadian federal government to develop technology using bacterial stress proteins as novel vaccine components. The funding, which is allocated through the National Research Council's Industrial Research Assistance Program, is being matched by the company over the course of the two-year project.
 Stress proteins are relatively abundant components of virtually all disease-causing bacteria and parasites. In addition, these proteins also share the ability to stimulate a strong immune response in humans during natural infections. These attributes make stress proteins attractive candidates for a new generation of vaccine components and therapeutics.
 StressGen researchers are developing a Unigen(TM) -- "universal antigen" -- technology whereby selected microbial stress proteins will be used in a number of potential vaccine formulations targeted towards the prevention of infectious diseases and the treatment of cancer.
 "We view this project as an exciting and far-reaching opportunity to further our understanding of how to use the immune system to prevent and alleviate human morbidity and mortality," said Richard M. Glickman, StressGen's president and chief operating officer.
 Stress Proteins
 Research pioneered by StressGen's founders has focused on a unique class of proteins that all organisms make in response to life-threatening heat or chemical toxins at the cellular level. Originally called "heat shock proteins," these molecules also play a key role during non-stressful conditions and are essential to helping maintain the three-dimensional folding of cellular proteins necessary for life. Recent studies have shown that these "molecular chaperones" - - also known as stress proteins -- play a central role in the body's defense against disease.
 Results of studies during the past five years demonstrate that the immune system is primed to respond powerfully to the stress proteins of invading pathogens. Functioning as an early warning system to defend against mircobial infections and other forms of "non-self," stress proteins are "super antigenic:" they strongly stimulate the productions of disease-fighting antibodies, as well as specialized white blood cells against disease.
 StressGen is applying proprietary technology based on the universal ability of stress proteins to rapidly and specifically activate the immune system. The company's Unigen technology is aimed at using genetically engineered stress proteins to unlock the power of the immune system to prevent and treat disease.
 StressGen is developing infectious-disease vaccines, therapeutic cancer vaccines, vaccine adjuvants and carriers. The company also manufactures and markets stress-response reagents to researchers worldwide.
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 /CONTACT: That T. Ngo, Ph.D., chairman and chief executive officer, or Richard M. Glickman, president, chief operating officer, of StressGen Biotechnologies, 604-744-2811; or Charles Versaggi, Ph.D., of Gable/Versaggi BioCommunications, 408-358-4162, for StressGen Biotechnologies/
 (SSB.)


CO: StressGen Biotechnologies Corp. ST: IN: MTC SU:

RB-IC -- SE003 -- 2385 01/17/94 08:34 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 17, 1994
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