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TARGETED GENETICS, FRED HUTCHINSON CANCER RESEARCH CENTER RECEIVE APPROVAL TO BEGIN HUMAN GENE THERAPY TRIAL

 TARGETED GENETICS, FRED HUTCHINSON CANCER RESEARCH CENTER
 RECEIVE APPROVAL TO BEGIN HUMAN GENE THERAPY TRIAL
 Immunex Plans to Spin Off Gene Therapy Subsidiary
 SEATTLE, Feb. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Targeted Genetics Corp. (TGC) and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center announced today that the National Institutes of Health Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RAC) has unanimously approved a human gene therapy trial that is a potential treatment for people infected with the HIV virus, which causes AIDS. The initial study will be limited to the treatment of HIV-infected patients undergoing bone marrow transplantation for AIDS- related lymphoma. Approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was received in January. The trial will begin immediately at the Hutchinson Center.
 Drs. Philip A. Greenberg and Stanley R. Riddell are directing the study, which will use T cells targeted specifically to kill HIV- infected cells. These cells will be isolated from the patient, expanded to large numbers in tissue culture and then infused into the patient in an attempt to boost the immune system. According to Greenberg and Riddell, this form of specific adpotive immunotherapy has been shown to provide protection from potentially fatal viral infection in model systems. It represents a promising approach for the prevention and treatment of viral diseases in immuno-compromised people, such as those undergoing bone marrow transplants or with AIDS.
 The HIV-specific T cells will be modified using a retroviral vector (disabled virus) developed by TGC. The vector provides a method for tracking the cells' viability and persistence after they are administered to the patients, as well as a mechanism for killing off the cells if side effects from the therapy occur.
 "This is the first step in assessing our approach to developing gene therapy treatments for acquired and inherited diseases," said H. Stewart Parker, president and chief executive officer of TGC. "This is the first gene therapy trial approved for an AIDS treatment."
 Separately, Immunex Corp. (NASDAQ: IMNX), TGC's parent company, announced today that it will spin off Targeted Genetics as an independent company through an institutional private placement. Immunex will provide a portion of TGC's new funding, and will retain approximately 40 percent of TGC after the private placement is completed.
 "Immunex is excited about the potential which gene therapy has for the treatment of AIDS and other diseases," said Stephen A. Duzan, chairman of Immunex. "However, because our focus is on therapeutic products for cancer and autoimmune diseases, Immunex has decided to establish TGC as an independent business."
 Duzan will serve as chairman of the new company. Dr. Steven Gillis, Immunex's executive vice president and director of research, will serve on TGC's scientific advisory board. Parker left her position as vice president of corporate development at Immunex to serve as Targeted Genetics' president and chief executive officer. Parker helped found the new company, and has been managing the subsidiary since its inception.
 Greenberg, along with Drs. Richard Palmiter and George Stamatoyannopoulos of the University of Washington and Dr. A. Dusty Miller of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center all will serve as co-founders and scientific advisory board members. Greenberg is also a member of the Hutchinson Center.
 Targeted Genetics Corp. is developing gene therapy systems to treat acquired and inherited disease. Immunex created the subsidiary in 1989 to commercialize its technology in the field of gene therapy. TGC is now developing its proprietary technology in three important areas: using disabled viruses (retroviral vectors) to deliver normal genes into cells; using cytokine genes to improve and enhance the effects of gene therapy; and employing techniques to isolate and cultivate cells that target malignant or virally infected cells.
 Immunex Corp. is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the research, development, manufacture and marketing of products to treat cancer and autoimmune disease.
 The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center is an independent, non- profit research institution dedicated to the development and advances in medical technology to eliminate cancer and other potentially fatal diseases.
 -0- 2/13/92
 /CONTACT: Jason Rubin or Valoree Dowell of Immunex, 206-587-0430; or Susan Edmonds of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, 206-667-2896/
 (IMNX) CO: Immunex Corp.; Targeted Genetics Corp.; Fred Hutchinson Cancer
 Research Center ST: Washington IN: MTC SU:


LM -- SE003 -- 9554 02/13/92 08:31 EST
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Date:Feb 13, 1992
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