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ARIAD RECEIVES $500,000 GRANT FOR OSTEOPOROSIS RESEARCH

 CAMBRIDGE, Mass., July 15 /PRNewswire/ -- ARIAD Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: ARIAZ) today announced that it has been awarded a $500,000 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to support the development of a small-molecule drug to treat osteoporosis. The grant was awarded by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases of the National Institutes of Health.
 The growth and maintenance of the skeleton is a dynamic balance. Cells called osteoblasts constantly form new bone, while cells known as osteoclasts degrade bone in a process called resorption. Osteoporosis can result when bone resorption outpaces bone formation.
 ARIAD is pursuing a novel strategy for the treatment of osteoporosis. The Company is targeting an intracellular signaling protein, called Src, which appears to play a critical role in activating osteoclasts, the cells responsible for bone degradation.
 ARIAD scientists, led by Dr. Mark Zoller, the principal investigator of the grant, and Dr. Joan Brugge, the Company's Scientific Director and the codiscoverer of Src, are working to determine the precise structure of the Src protein and its function in osteoclasts. Using this information, ARIAD is developing small-molecule compounds designed to block the activity of Src in osteoclasts and thereby reestablish the proper balance between bone formation and bone resorption. Lead compounds which bind selectively to critical domains of Src are currently being studied in cell-based assays.
 Osteoporosis causes a severe decrease in bone density which in turn can often lead to collapsed vertebrae and fractured wrists and hips. The disease, which afflicts about 10 percent of the population of the industrialized world, occurs primarily in older women. Due to demographic trends, the incidence of osteoporosis is expected to double in the next 25 years.
 In the United States, over 1.3 million bone fractures are attributed to osteoporosis annually. Many osteoporosis patients who sustain a fracture suffer a distinct loss of mobility, and nearly a quarter of those who fracture their hips die within six months. The total medical and social costs of osteoporosis and its consequences exceeded $10 billion in the United States in 1990.
 ARIAD is a second-generation biotechnology company dedicated to the discovery and development of a new class of biopharmaceuticals that target intracellular communication pathways to alter the course of disease.
 -0- 7/15/94
 /CONTACT: Charles C. Cabot III, 617-494-0400, or Thomas A. Pearson, 610-995-9730, both of ARIAD Pharmaceuticals/
 (ARIAZ)


CO: ARIAD Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ST: Massachusetts IN: MTC SU:

JL -- NE007 -- 5710 07/15/94 10:23 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 15, 1994
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