SOURCE: Entelos, Inc.

January 23, 2007 06:30 ET

Entelos Completes Cardiovascular PhysioLab Platform

Creates Breakthrough Technology to Find Next-Generation Therapies for High Cholesterol, Atherosclerosis, and Heart Disease

FOSTER CITY, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- January 23, 2007 -- Entelos, Inc. (LSE: ENTL), a leading life sciences company building predictive computer models of human physiology and "virtual patients" for drug discovery and development, announced today the completion of its Cardiovascular PhysioLab® platform, a comprehensive large-scale computer simulation of cholesterol regulation, atherogenesis, and cardiovascular risk. This newly developed platform enables Entelos to rapidly assess novel drug targets, evaluate combination therapies, identify and interpret biomarker patterns, and predict a drug's long-term clinical efficacy in managing cholesterol, atherosclerosis, and heart disease. The company is already conducting research in partnership with three big pharmaceutical customers using this platform.

James Karis, president and CEO of Entelos, commented, "We believe our cardiovascular disease model will help our partners develop the next-generation of therapies for managing some of the world's most deadly cardiovascular diseases, including high cholesterol, atherosclerosis, and heart disease. We are pleased to add the new Cardiovascular PhysioLab platform to our growing portfolio of disease models that already serve as a powerful and innovative approach to revolutionize diagnosis, treatment, monitoring and prevention of complex, chronic diseases."

The platform has been developed to support drug discovery research, biomarker identification, and clinical development of cholesterol-lowering and anti-inflammatory therapies that could treat and ultimately prevent atherosclerotic plaque formation. For the first time, pharmaceutical researchers have a comprehensive, dynamic "flight simulator" that enables rapid testing in silico (i.e., in a computer) to see how effects of multiple interacting factors, particularly lipid levels and inflammatory processes, can contribute to the risk of cardiovascular events.

Cholesterol-lowering drugs are among the most successful therapies in the world, generating over $27 billion in global sales last year and helping to lower the overall risk of cardiovascular disease for millions of patients. However, cardiovascular disease still remains a leading killer in the developed world, and deaths from heart disease and stroke account for 35% of annual mortality in the U.S. alone. The major disease process underlying both heart disease and stroke is atherosclerosis, the slow build up of fatty deposits (plaque) in the arteries. While lowering "bad" cholesterol and raising "good" cholesterol levels correlates with better cardiac health, other more complex factors contribute to atherosclerosis, heart disease, and cardiovascular risk.

Researchers have uncovered multiple factors contributing to the slow and relentless build-up of plaque in the arteries, veins, and heart -- making the study of the atherosclerotic process and finding new therapies even more difficult. There is great variability in patients, including differences in family history, diet, exercise, and smoking habits, and associated health problems such as obesity, hypertension, or diabetes that can further complicate research. In addition, atherosclerosis develops over a long period of time, demanding large and expensive clinical trials to prove efficacy and safety of novel therapies.

Notes to editors

About Entelos

Entelos, Inc. (www.entelos.com) builds predictive in silico disease models and uses "virtual patients" to revolutionize the way medicines are discovered, developed, and utilized. The Company's predictive computer models, known as PhysioLab® systems, are used to validate novel drug targets, select and develop compounds, assess safety, optimize clinical trials and combination therapies, reprofile drugs, evaluate in-licensing candidates, and better position existing products in competitive markets. In addition to internal programs, Entelos partners with global pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies and currently provides scientific expertise and models in such areas as cardiovascular disease, asthma, obesity, diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis, and complex physiological processes such as hematopoiesis (anemia), cholesterol metabolism, and skin sensitization.

About Cardiovascular Disease

Cardiovascular disease, principally heart disease and stroke, kills approximately one million Americans each year, making it the number one killer in the United States. Elevated cholesterol levels in the blood have long been recognized as a risk factor and precursor for a wide range of health problems. Cardiovascular disease includes conditions that lead to narrowing of the arteries due to thickening of the walls and fatty deposits known as atherosclerotic plaque. Narrowing of the vessels in this way results in increased pressure or strain on the heart, and reduced blood flow to other tissues. Ischemic heart disease is caused by constriction or blockage of the vessels that deliver oxygenated blood to heart muscle. Often plaques break or rupture resulting in complete blockage of blood flow due to formation of a clot, when this happens in the heart it causes a myocardial infarction or heart attack. Inadequate oxygen flow to areas of the brain or rupture of coronary vessels results in stroke. Hypertension, or high blood pressure, contributes to vessel wall thickness, reducing the blood supply to all areas of the body and causing the heart to work harder to pump the same amount of blood, often leading to heart failure. Similarly, diabetes accelerates plaque formation and results in a two-to-three-fold increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Environmental pollution, daily stress, and family history (genetics) can all contribute to cardiovascular disease, as do a number of lifestyle health-related behaviors, including tobacco use, lack of physical activity, and poor nutrition. Traditional treatment approaches include medication and surgery, and many scientific studies show a positive effect from changes in diet and lifestyle. Optimal treatment regimens can therefore be complex.

About Entelos Cardiovascular PhysioLab® Platform

Entelos® Cardiovascular PhysioLab® platform is a large-scale mathematical model of human physiology that supports research in the area of cardiovascular disease. The platform includes the physiology and pathophysiology of cholesterol metabolism, atherosclerosis, and plaque rupture.

The Cardiovascular PhysioLab platform includes four submodels:

--  Cholesterol metabolism - includes both 'good' and 'bad' cholesterol,
    high-density lipoprotein (HDL) and low-density lipoprotein (LDL),
    respectively.  Represents the dynamic regulation of lipoprotein particle
    size, number, and composition, all of which have a significant impact on
    disease progression and prognosis, as well as their altered synthesis and
    uptake by the liver.
    
--  Atherogenesis - represents the mechanisms of lipid retention,
    modification, uptake, and processing by vascular and inflammatory cells,
    the regulation of which leads to plaque development and progression.
    
--  Plaque stability - integrates changes in plaque composition, size, and
    geometry by calculating peak stresses in the plaque wall that can lead to
    unstable plaque and rupture.
    
--  Cardiovascular risk - employs statistical methods and longitudinal
    patient data to translate the plaque stability readouts into the likelihood
    of cardiovascular risk.
    

Risk factors (e.g., smoking, diabetes, and hypertension) and known or hypothesized genetic variants are represented across the physiologic submodels of the platform. In this manner, a broad range of "virtual patients" can be generated in the platform, tested against existing clinical data, and then used for simulations of novel therapies and clinical protocols.

Contact Information

  • Enquiries
    Entelos, Inc.
    Jill Fujisaki
    Vice President
    Investor Relations
    Tel: +1 650 572 5430
    Email Contact

    Brunswick Group
    Justine McIlroy
    Alex Tweed
    Jon Coles
    Tel: +44 207404 5959