Upstream Biosciences Inc.

Upstream Biosciences Inc.

October 15, 2007 08:02 ET

Upstream Biosciences and Government of Uganda Sign Letter of Intent to Collaborate on Development of Novel Agents to Treat Tropical Parasitic Diseases

Represents First of Expected Multiple Collaborations Intended to Accelerate the Development and Commercialization of Upstream's Promising Drug Candidates

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Oct. 15, 2007) - Upstream Biosciences Inc. (OTCBB:UPBS) today announced that the Ministry of Health of Uganda has issued a letter of intent confirming its plans to collaborate with Upstream on the development of the company's novel therapeutic compounds to treat topical parasitic diseases, focusing initially on African sleeping sickness and leishmaniasis. These parasites, which belong to a family of protozoa species that include Chagas disease and malaria, infect millions of individuals annually.

Upstream has recently acquired access to innovative drug candidates designed to treat these diseases. In laboratory studies in vitro, these compounds have demonstrated encouraging potential and may have application in both human and animal forms of these diseases.

"This letter of intent with the government of Uganda marks the first success in our campaign to collaborate with a variety of public health and government organizations to speed the development and commercialization of our promising new drug candidates against tropical parasitic diseases," said Joel L. Bellenson, Chief Executive Officer of Upstream. "Our recent participation in the International Scientific Council for Trypanosomiasis Research and Control conference in Africa and our meetings with African officials have been very beneficial in furthering our understanding of the potential of our new therapies for combating these devastating diseases in humans and cattle, as well as building the relationships that are vital to the success of our ambitious drug development plans."

About African Sleeping Sickness (trypanosomiasis)

Sleeping sickness is a parasitic disease in people and animals caused by protozoa of the Trypanosomiasis genus and transmitted by the tsetse fly. According to the WHO, trypanosomiasis is endemic in regions of sub-Saharan Africa covering 36 countries and putting 60 million people at risk of contracting the disease. There are approximately 11,000 new cases reported each year. Early symptoms include anemia, endocrine, cardiac and kidney disorders. The symptoms of the second neurological phase give the disease its name; besides confusion and reduced coordination, the sleep cycle is profoundly disturbed. Without treatment, the disease is fatal, with progressive mental deterioration leading to coma and death. Damage caused in the neurological phase can be irreversible. Available treatments are toxic and require lengthy intravenous infusion and hospitalization. Trypanosomiasis also is a major source of serious illness in cattle and other livestock, which is estimated to cost the economies of sub-Saharan Africa about $4.5 billion annually from lost farm income and increased malnutrition.

About Leishmaniasis

Leishmaniasis is a severe, geographically widespread parasitic disease caused by a protozoan flagellate and spread by the bite of infected sand flies. There are several different forms of leishmaniasis---cutaneous and visceral. The cutaneous type causes skin sores, while the visceral type affects internal organs such as the spleen, liver and bone marrow. Leishmaniasis is increasing in incidence with an estimated two million cases per year, and 350 million people in 88 countries are estimated to be at risk. More than 90% of the world's cases of visceral leishmaniasis are in India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sudan, and Brazil. Leishmaniasis is also found in Mexico, Central America, and South America. Visceral leishmaniasis can be lethal if untreated.

About Upstream Biosciences Inc.

Founded in 2004, Upstream Biosciences is an emerging leader in the discovery and development of novel drugs for tropical parasitic diseases and in the development of genetic diagnostics for cancer susceptibility and drug response. Upstream's innovative approach to drug discovery and its proprietary data mining pipeline enable it to apply advanced computational approaches to generating novel drug candidates and to locating and analyzing the genetic variations important to disease progression and drug response. For more information visit

Notice Regarding Forward-Looking Statements: This news release contains "forward-looking statements", as that term is defined in Section 27A of the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the United States Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Statements in this press release which are not purely historical are forward-looking statements and include any statements regarding beliefs, plans, expectations or intentions regarding the future. Such forward-looking statements include, among others, the expectation and/or claim, as applicable, that: (i) the Company may enter into additional collaborations; (ii) such collaborations may accelerate the development and commercialization of the Company's drug candidates; (iii) the Ministry of Health of Uganda may collaborate with the Company on the development of the Company's therapeutic compounds; and (iv) the Company's compounds may have application in both human and animal forms of such diseases. Actual results could differ from those projected in any forward-looking statements due to numerous factors. Such factors include, among others: (i) the risk that the Company does not execute its business plan; (ii) the inability of the Company to keep pace with technological advancements in the field of genetic diagnostics and the treatment of tropical parasitic diseases; (iii) the Company's inability to adequately protect its intellectual property or the Company's inadvertent infringement of third party intellectual property; (iv) the Company not being able to retain key employees; (v) competitors providing better or cheaper products and technologies; (vi) markets for the Company's products not developing as expected; (vii) the Company's inability to finance its operations or growth; (viii) inability to obtain all necessary government and regulatory approvals; and (ix) the inability to effectively market and commercialize the Company's technologies, including the establishment of viable relationships with third parties. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this news release and the Company assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements, or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Although the Company believes that the beliefs, plans, expectations and intentions contained in this press release are reasonable, there can be no assurance those beliefs, plans, expectations, or intentions will prove to be accurate. Investors should consider all of the information set forth herein and should also refer to the risk factors disclosed in the Company's periodic reports filed from time-to-time with the Securities and Exchange Commission and available at

Contact Information

  • GendeLLindheim BioCom Partners
    Barbara Lindheim
    (212) 918-4650
    Upstream Biosciences Inc.
    Samantha Haynes