SOURCE: Marina Biotech, Inc.

Marina Biotech, Inc.

February 14, 2011 08:30 ET

Marina Biotech Describes Integrated Technology Platform for the Development of RNAi-, microRNA- and Antisense-based Therapeutics

Collaboration and Licensing Partners Fund Efforts in Local and Systemic Administration of Company's Novel Delivery Systems; Marina Biotech Focuses on Clinical Pipeline and CRN Technology

BOTHELL, WA--(Marketwire - February 14, 2011) - Marina Biotech, Inc. (NASDAQ: MRNA), a leading RNAi-based drug discovery and development company, today presented their integrated technology platform for the discovery of multiple oligonucleotide based therapeutics including RNAi-, microRNA- and antisense-based drugs at the BIO CEO and Investor Conference held today in New York City. J. Michael French, President and CEO of Marina Biotech, Inc. explained the strategy behind Marina Biotech's acquisition of key intellectual property and technologies over the past year which has positioned it to provide multiple RNA-based therapeutic alternatives to pharma's non-druggable target needs. With the Debiopharm partnership fully funding the development of the Company's bladder cancer program using the Company's proprietary DiLA2 delivery technology for local administration combined with licensee ProNAi funding a Phase 1 clinical trial using the Company's proprietary Smarticles® delivery technology for systemic administration; the Company is focusing its financial resources on the Phase 1b/2a clinical trial of CEQ508 in Familial Adenomatous Polyposis (FAP) as well as development of its Conformationally Restricted Nucleotide technology (CRN) for the development of single-stranded oligonucleotide therapies.

"We find ourselves in an enviable position where others are funding the development and human testing of our proprietary technologies allowing us to focus resources on our clinical program in FAP and CRN technology," stated J. Michael French, President and CEO of Marina Biotech, Inc. "We believe our recently announced Debiopharm collaboration, ProNAi's advancement into human clinical testing of its oncology drug candidate with our delivery technology, and our internal clinical program in FAP validates our ability to deliver nucleic acid-based therapeutics via local, systemic and oral administration. We plan to focus our research efforts in expanding our opportunities in systemic administration by applying our CRN technology to the development of single-stranded oligonucleotide therapeutics. We believe this approach will provide us with additional and potentially greater opportunities for pharma collaborations as well as reducing our annual operating expenses."

About Marina Biotech, Inc.

Marina Biotech is a biotechnology company, focused on the development and commercialization of RNA interference- (RNAi) and RNA-based therapeutics. The Marina Biotech pipeline currently includes a clinical program in Familial Adenomatous Polyposis (a precancerous syndrome) and two preclinical programs -- in hepatocellular carcinoma and bladder cancer. Marina Biotech has recently entered an exclusive agreement with Debiopharm Group for the development and commercialization of the bladder cancer program. Marina Biotech's goal is to improve human health through the development of RNAi and RNA-based compounds and drug delivery technologies that together provide superior therapeutic options for patients. Additional information about Marina Biotech is available at http://www.marinabio.com.

About CEQ508

CEQ508, which received Orphan Drug Designation from the FDA in December 2010, is the first drug candidate in a novel class of therapeutic agents utilizing the transkingdom RNA interference (tkRNAi) platform. CEQ508 comprises attenuated bacteria that are engineered to enter into dysplastic tissue and release a payload of short-hairpin RNA (shRNA), a mediator in the RNAi pathway. The shRNA targets the mRNA of Beta-catenin, which is known to be dysregulated in classical FAP. CEQ508 is being developed as an orally administered treatment to reduce the levels of Beta-catenin protein in the epithelial cells of the small and large intestine. Upon enrollment, patients will be placed in one of four dose-escalating cohorts. Following completion of the dose escalation phase, the trial plan calls for a stable-dose phase in which additional patients will receive the highest safe dose. CEQ508 will be administered daily in an oral suspension for 28 consecutive days. For more information please contact clinicaltrials@marinabio.com

About CRN

Conformationally Restricted Nucleotides (CRN) are novel analogs in which the flexible ribose sugar is locked into a rigid conformation by a small chemical linker. By restricting the flexibility of the ribose ring, CRNs can impart a helix-type structure typically found in naturally occurring RNA. For single stranded oligonucleotide therapeutics, the impact of CRN substitution dramatically increases the therapeutics' affinity for target mRNA or miRNA while imparting significant resistance to nuclease degradation. Additionally, CRNs significantly improve the thermal stability of duplexed oligonucleotides such as siRNAs. The CRN patent estate consists of two issued patents broadly covering CRN compounds and CRN containing oligonucleotides, and one pending patent application covering additional applications of CRN's.

Forward-Looking Statements

Statements made in this news release may be forward-looking statements within the meaning of Federal Securities laws that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties and involve factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected or suggested. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to: (i) the ability of Marina Biotech to obtain additional funding; (ii) the ability of Marina Biotech to attract and/or maintain manufacturing, research, development and commercialization partners; (iii) the ability of Marina Biotech and/or a partner to successfully complete product research and development, including preclinical and clinical studies and commercialization; (iv) the ability of Marina Biotech and/or a partner to obtain required governmental approvals; and (v) the ability of Marina Biotech and/or a partner to develop and commercialize products that can compete favorably with those of competitors. Additional factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected or suggested in any forward-looking statements are contained in Marina Biotech's most recent periodic reports on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q that are filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Marina Biotech assumes no obligation to update and supplement forward-looking statements because of subsequent events.

Contact Information

  • Marina Biotech, Inc. Contact:

    Marina Biotech, Inc.
    Pete Garcia
    Chief Financial Officer
    (425) 908-3603
    Email Contact