Allon Therapeutics Inc.
TSX : NPC

Allon Therapeutics Inc.

May 01, 2008 09:15 ET

Allon Data Demonstrate Potential of AL-309 as a New Neuropathy Treatment

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - May 1, 2008) - Allon Therapeutics Inc. (TSX:NPC) presented preclinical data today that demonstrate the potential of the Company's proprietary product candidate AL-309 as a treatment for peripheral neuropathy. AL-309 is the lead candidate in Allon's second neuroprotection technology platform, derived from Activity Dependent Neurotrophic Factor (ADNF).

Dr. Alistair Stewart, Director of Corporate Development at Allon, said data presented at the Drug Development for Neurodegenerative Conditions conference in Arlington, VA., indicates that AL-309 delivered orally in a rat model of diabetic neuropathy not only reduced the pain symptoms associated with the condition but also decreased nerve damage.

"We believe these preclinical results point to AL-309's potential as a disease-modifying treatment for a condition currently under-served by approved drugs which offer only partial symptomatic relief," Stewart said.

Peripheral neuropathy is a condition suffered by millions of people resulting from nerve damage that leads to pain, discomfort, numbness and muscle weakness. Among the major causes of neuropathy are diabetes and cancer chemotherapy.

"Drug sales in the U.S. and Europe amount to approximately $4 billion a year to treat neuropathic pain, yet these approved drugs are only moderately effective in treating the pain and have no impact on the nerve damage that causes the pain," said Stewart. "Our preclinical studies have shown that AL-309 has neuroprotective activity relevant to neuropathy and potentially to other neurodegenerative conditions."

AL-309 was tested in two independent studies where diabetes was chemically-induced in rats. As in humans, diabetes in rats leads to progressive development of neuropathy characterized by hypersensitivity to pain, touch, warm and cold stimuli. AL-309 produced a dose-dependent and statistically significant prevention of all of these behavioural end-points showing that it has broad potential for treating the symptoms of nerve damage. In addition, pathology data showed a statistically significant effect on intra-epidermal nerve fiber density demonstrating the capacity to dramatically reduce the loss of nerve fibre.

The Drug Development for Neurodegenerative Conditions conference is organized by CBI Research, Inc. (CBI), a provider of live and electronic conferences for senior-level executives in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries. Dr. Stewart's presentation is available on Allon's website at: www.allontherapeutics.com.

Allon believes development of its ADNF platform will bring the Company significant new commercial opportunities, distinct from and in addition to the development of its first neuroprotection technology platform, Activity-Dependent Neuroprotective Protein (ADNP) platform.

Allon's ADNP compounds AL-108 and AL-208 are now in Phase II clinical trials as treatments for Alzheimer's disease, cognitive impairment associated with schizophrenia and mild cognitive impairment after coronary artery bypass graft surgery (MCI-CABG).

During Q1 2008, Allon announced Phase IIa clinical trial results showing that AL-108 improves the memory of patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), a precursor to Alzheimer's. The trial demonstrated statistically significant improvements on key endpoints that measure short-term memory, working memory and recognition, three types of memory that are clinically relevant in Alzheimer's.

About Allon's neuroprotective platforms

Activity-dependent neuroprotective protein (ADNP) and activity-dependent neurotrophic factor (ADNF) are proteins secreted by glial cells in response to a range of insults. Allon drugs under development from the ADNP and ADNF proteins are different molecules with different therapeutic mechanisms and distinct commercial opportunities.

About Allon

Allon Therapeutics Inc. is a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing treatments for major neurodegenerative conditions. In Q1 2008 Allon's drug AL-108 demonstrated human efficacy in amnestic mild cognitive impairment, a precursor to Alzheimer's disease. Allon has two other Phase II human efficacy trials under way pursuing three large underserved markets: Alzheimer's disease, stroke and cognitive impairment associated with schizophrenia. The Company is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the trading symbol "NPC" (Neuroprotection Company™) and based in Vancouver. For additional information please visit the Company's website: www.allontherapeutics.com.

Forward Looking Statements

Statements contained herein, other than those which are strictly statements of historical fact may include forward-looking information. Such statements will typically contain words such as "believes", "may", "plans", "will", "estimate", "continue", "anticipates", "intends", "expects", and similar expressions. While forward-looking statements represent management's outlook based on assumptions that management believes are reasonable, forward-looking statements by their nature are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, events or developments to be materially different from any future results, events or developments expressed or implied by them. Such factors include, among others, the inherent uncertainty involved in scientific research and drug development, Allon's early stage of development, lack of product revenues, its additional capital requirements, the risks associated with successful completion of clinical trials and the long lead-times and high costs associated with obtaining regulatory approval to market any product which Allon may eventually develop. Other risk factors include the limited protections afforded by intellectual property rights, rapid technology and product obsolescence in a highly competitive environment and Allon's dependence on collaborative partners and contract research organizations.

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