SOURCE: Moleculin Biotech, Inc.

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September 06, 2017 07:30 ET

Moleculin to Collaborate on Combining its WP1122 Brain Cancer Drug Candidate with Roche's Drug Avastin

HOUSTON, TX--(Marketwired - September 06, 2017) - Moleculin Biotech, Inc. (NASDAQ: MBRX) ("Moleculin" or the "Company"), a preclinical pharmaceutical company focused on the development of anti-cancer drug candidates, some of which are based on license agreements with The University of Texas System on behalf of the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, today announced it has entered into a collaborative agreement with the University of Bergen to test WP1122 in combination with the drug Avastin(R) (bevacizumab) made by Roche Pharma. Roche Pharma is not a party to the collaborative agreement.

"The potential for synergy with Roche's drug is compelling," commented Walter Klemp, Chairman and CEO of Moleculin. "Avastin showed early promise in the treatment of brain tumors, but its usefulness has been hampered by the ability of brain tumors to develop resistance to anti-vascular therapy. Avastin prevents formation of new blood vessels including blood vessels that feed growing tumors and, as such, creates an environment where tumors become more dependent on glycolysis (a means of producing energy induced by a limited oxygen supply from the blood) enabling a potential form of therapy resistance. We've shown in animal models that WP1122 as an inhibitor of glycolysis limits tumor growth and increases survival in animals transplanted with human brain tumors, so it is logical to consider that WP1122 could potentially be an effective way to deal with Avastin resistance, as a follow up treatment, or in combination with Avastin."

"We have developed novel human brain tumor models in mice that display Avastin-resistance," added Dr. Rolf Bjerkvig, Professor at the Department of Biomedicine, University of Bergen in Norway, "that should allow us to validate the efficacy of WP1122 inhibition of Avastin-induced glycolysis. This may represent a breakthrough in treating brain tumors by using WP1122 in combination with Avastin. We are eager to explore this potential through our collaboration with Moleculin."

About Moleculin Biotech, Inc.

Moleculin Biotech, Inc. is a preclinical stage pharmaceutical company focused on the development of anti-cancer drug candidates, some of which are based on discoveries made at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. Our lead product candidate is Annamycin, an anthracycline being studied for the treatment of relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia, more commonly referred to as AML. We also have two preclinical small molecule portfolios in development, one of which is focused on the modulation of hard-to-target tumor cell signaling mechanisms and the recruitment of the patient's own immune system. The other portfolio targets the metabolism of tumors.

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Forward-Looking Statements

Some of the statements in this release are forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, without limitation, the potential for WP1122 to become an effective treatment for brain tumors. These statements relate to future events, future expectations, plans and prospects. Although Moleculin Biotech believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable as of the date made, expectations may prove to have been materially different from the results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Moleculin Biotech has attempted to identify forward-looking statements by terminology including ''believes,'' ''estimates,'' ''anticipates,'' ''expects,'' ''plans,'' ''projects,'' ''intends,'' ''potential,'' ''may,'' ''could,'' ''might,'' ''will,'' ''should,'' ''approximately'' or other words that convey uncertainty of future events or outcomes to identify these forward-looking statements. These statements are only predictions and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors, including those discussed under Item 1A. "Risk Factors" in our most recently filed Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") and updated from time to time in our Form 10-Q filings and in our other public filings with the SEC. Any forward-looking statements contained in this release speak only as of its date. We undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this release to reflect events or circumstances occurring after its date or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

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