Printer Friendly

VESTAR'S MIKASOME ACTIVE AGAINST DRUG-RESISTANT TUBERCULOSIS; ONE OF FOUR NEW PRODUCTS HEADED TO CLINIC, VESTAR ANNOUNCES

 BALTIMORE, May 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Speaking today at the Alex. Brown Health Care Conference, Vestar (NASDAQ: VSTR) announced that MiKasome, its liposomal formulation of the antibiotic amikacin, has shown significant activity against drug-resistant tuberculosis, for which no effective treatment presently exists. MiKasome and three other Vestar products -- VincaXome, CycloXome and AMP-53 -- were named today as being on an accelerated schedule to enter clinical trials in the near term.
 In vitro data indicated that in a tuberculosis model resistant to traditional chemotherapeutics, including amikacin, MiKasome produced a several thousandfold killing effect. Amikacin is an aminoglycoside antibiotic that is employed against many infections. Its use, however, has been limited by a high degree of toxicity, including kidney damage and hearing loss at effective doses.
 "Tuberculosis has become once again one of the world's significant killers, partly due to a decline in worldwide public health standards as well as to the emergence of a number of drug resistant strains of the disease. Because tuberculosis is spread through casual contact, the general population is at risk," said Dr. Roger J. Crossley, Vestar chairman, president and CEO. "We're extremely encouraged to see such activity against drug-resistant tuberculosis by MiKasome, and we plan to advance the clinical development of the product as rapidly as possible."
 Management noted that based on the promising data emerging on MiKasome from preclinical trials conducted with Vestar's research partner AmpliMed, preliminary human clinical trials of the drug are scheduled to begin in the next few months. Among the potential disease targets for the product in addition to tuberculosis are gram negative infections and Mycobacterium avium infections, for which MiKasome has already demonstrated promising results both in vitro and in animal models.
 VincaXome is a liposomal formulation of the potent, yet highly toxic, antitumor agent vincristine, which has shown the ability to shrink tumors in animal models, while reducing toxicity by 50 percent over the free form of the drug.
 AMP-53 is the first of a novel series of more than 100 new synthetic anticancer compounds developed by Vestar's majority owned research partner AmpliMed. AMP-53 has shown high anticancer activity and also has been shown to overcome multiple drug resistance, while lowering cardiotoxic potential. Clinical trials for AMP-53 should begin within the next 12 to 18 months.
 Multiple drug resistance occurs when patients cease to respond to therapy, as their cancer cells develop the ability to "pump" an anticancer drug out of the cell. AMP-53 has been developed to overcome this resistance. In addition, the drug cyclosporin A is known to block this protective mechanism, but clinicians must give extremely prolonged infusions in order to maintain high enough concentrations for it to be useful without producing dangerously toxic side effects.
 CycloXome is Vestar's liposomal formulation of cyclosporin A, and has demonstrated promising ability in overcoming multiple drug resistance. Its development is focused on use with conventional cancer drug therapies, with the objective of making them more effective.
 Summarizing Vestar's presentation, Crossley stated, "The addition of these four products to Vestar's clinical product portfolio illustrate how the breadth of our R&D pipeline is driving Vestar's future as a fully integrated pharmaceutical company."
 Company management also provided an update regarding the continued commercialization expansion of its first two products, AmBisome(R), for the treatment of systemic fungal infections, DaunoXome(R), for AIDS related Kaposi's sarcoma.
 Vestar, headquartered in San Dimas, Calif., develops, manufactures and markets pharmaceuticals to treat patients with cancer and serious infections, including AIDS. Since 1989, Vestar has been marketing in Europe AmBisome(R), a liposomal formulation of amphotericin B, to treat systemic fungal infections. DaunoXome(R), a liposomal formulation of the chemotherapeutic agent daunorubicin, is Vestar's second major product. Among the company's proprietary drug delivery technologies are liposomes to encapsulate pharmaceuticals, and lipid prodrug technology for the development of orally active compounds.
 -0- 5/11/93
 /CONTACT: Michael E. Hart, chief financial officer, Vestar, Inc., 909-394-4119; Marcia A. Kean, executive vice president, Feinstein Partners Inc., 617-577-8110, for Vestar/
 (VSTR)


CO: Vestar, Inc. ST: California, Maryland IN: MTC SU:

DJ -- NE011 -- 6934 05/11/93 10:20 EDT
COPYRIGHT 1993 PR Newswire Association LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 11, 1993
Words:676
Previous Article:THERMOTREX RECEIVES $2.2 MILLION TO CONTINUE ADAPTIVE OPTICS WORK
Next Article:EBASCO AND CHINESE INSTITUTE FORM CHINA'S FIRST ENGINEERING SERVICES JOINT VENTURE
Topics:


Related Articles
VESTAR ANNOUNCES ESTIMATED 4TH QUARTER, YEAR-END 1992 SALES; PRODUCT REVENUES UP 86 PERCENT IN FIRST FULL PROFITABLE YEAR
FUJISAWA USA FILES IND APPLICATION FOR VESTAR'S AMBISOME(R)
VESTAR FILES NEW DRUG APPLICATION FOR DAUNOXOME (R) AS TREATMENT FOR KAPOSI'S SARCOMA PATIENTS
VESTAR FILES PATENT INFRINGEMENT LAWSUIT IN UNITED KINGDOM AGAINST LIPOSOME TECHNOLOGY, INC.
VESTAR REPORTS 1992 FOURTH QUARTER AND YEAR-END RESULTS; PRODUCT REVENUES UP 86 PERCENT; COMPANY EARNS 20 CENTS PER SHARE
VESTAR'S AMBISOME GAINS FULL MARKETING APPROVAL IN THE NETHERLANDS
VESTAR'S AMBISOME GAINS FULL MARKETING APPROVAL IN GREECE
FDA'S ONCOLOGY ADVISORY COMMITTEE REVIEWS CLINICAL DATA ON VESTAR'S DAUNOXOME FOR TREATMENT OF KAPOSI'S SARCOMA
PHASE I CLINICAL TRIALS OF MIKASOME INITIATED BY VESTAR; LIPOSOMAL FORMULATION OF ANTIBIOTIC MAY COMBAT RESISTANT TB
VESTAR REPORTS SECOND QUARTER 1993 RESULTS; REVENUES UP 34 PERCENT AS R&D AND MARKETING EXPENDITURES ACCELERATE

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters