SOURCE: Hepregen Corporation

toxicity screening and drug discovery

March 03, 2011 08:00 ET

Hepregen Corporation Announces Commercial Launch of HepatoPac™ Microliver Platform for In Vitro ADME/Tox Applications

Validated Technology Platform Addresses Liver Toxicity Issues Which Result in Costly Drug Discovery & Development Delays

MEDFORD, MA--(Marketwire - March 3, 2011) - Hepregen Corporation, a leading provider of bioengineered solutions that increase success in drug development in order to improve patient safety, will launch its proprietary technology platform, HepatoPac, at the SOT 50th Anniversary Annual Meeting and ToxExpo in Washington, D.C. on March 7, 2011.

HepatoPac is a microliver platform for use in clearance predictions, metabolite profiling, transporter studies, and toxicity determination during the drug development process. Hepregen's HepatoPac products will be available through its services model initially, and then later this year through direct product sales.

The utility of HepatoPac in ADME/Tox applications is being validated and adopted by several leading biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies including Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. In an announcement earlier this year, Hepregen detailed the expansion of its collaboration with Boehringer Ingelheim for the integration of HepatoPac into drug discovery and development programs.

Co-Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer, Bernadette C. (Bonnie) Fendrock commented on the launch, "Hepregen's goal is to develop and provide bioengineered solutions to our customers that reduce risk in drug development and lead to safer drugs. HepatoPac addresses the significant need in the pharmaceutical industry for increasing confidence in the data packages that are used to prioritize compounds moving forward in the pipeline. The commercial launch will allow us to broadly address the market and accelerate our efforts to make HepatoPac the industry standard for reducing attrition rates caused by liver liability."

On March 8, at the SOT meeting, the leading industry event for toxicology, Hepregen Co-Founder and Director of Research Dr. Salman Khetani will give an oral presentation on the Company's technology entitled, "Applications of Microscale Animal and Human in vitro Liver Models in Toxicology." At the same meeting on March 10, data generated in collaboration with Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Sanofi-Aventis will be presented in three separate posters.

About HepatoPac
Traditional methods provide limited insight into clinical outcomes with sensitivities as low as 50%. As a result, liver liability remains a significant cause of costly delays and attrition in drug development. HepatoPac addresses this fundamental problem of discordance by providing tighter correlation between in vitro metabolism and safety studies, and the results seen in vivo and in the clinic. 

The technology behind HepatoPac creates a microenvironment where primary hepatocytes (both human and animal) remain viable and physiologically functional for several weeks. Hepatocytes in traditional cultures begin to die within hours of being put into culture. The long term stability and biochemical fidelity of HepatoPac allow for uptake, efflux, metabolism and toxicity studies that mimic in vivo situations. A whitepaper on the technology is available at:

About Hepregen Corporation
Hepregen's mission is to translate the value of its technology platform to improve the safety and efficacy of drugs in development with greater economic efficiency and significant impact on patients' lives. The company is focused on advancing and commercializing its microliver platform, HepatoPac™, into the drug-development pipeline of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Hepregen's platform technology offers the potential to deliver a breakthrough technology for toxicity screening and a new platform for drug discovery. It combines sophisticated biological and engineering technologies to create an in vitro liver model which closely mimics many key functions and features of the human liver.

Currently, Hepregen is partnered with over 15 pharmaceutical companies using the HepatoPac technology, including Pfizer, Alnylam Pharmaceuticals and Sanofi-Aventis. In 2008, Battelle Ventures spun out Hepregen Corporation from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and led the company's Series A financing. The company is currently raising its Series B financing.

For more information about Hepregen, please visit:

Contact Information