SOURCE: Amarillo Biosciences, Inc.

May 17, 2010 11:35 ET

Viral Serology Confirms That Oral Interferon Reduces Incidence of Cold and Flu Symptoms in Australian Phase 2 Clinical Trial

AMARILLO, TX--(Marketwire - May 17, 2010) -  Amarillo Biosciences, Inc. (ABI) (OTCBB: AMAR) today announced additional positive results from a Phase 2 clinical trial conducted at the University of Western Australia. A total of 200 healthy volunteers were enrolled in this study to take a once daily dose of oral interferon or placebo for 16 weeks as prevention of influenza-like illness during the 2009 Australian cold and flu season. Blood samples collected from the volunteers at the beginning and end of treatment were tested for evidence of infection with seven common respiratory viruses, including influenza virus A and B; parainfluenza virus 1, 2 and 3; adenovirus; and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

Among the subjects who tested positive for infection with one of seven respiratory viruses, the rate of reported influenza-like illness was significantly lower (p < 0.05) in those treated with interferon, compared to placebo. In addition, the symptoms of cough, head congestion and sore throat were reported to be significantly less severe (p < 0.05) by the subjects treated with interferon. All ten of the other cold/flu symptoms assessed in this study occurred less often and with lower severity in the interferon-treated subjects with confirmed viral infection.

Dr. Manfred Beilharz, the study leader, said "We are very pleased with the objective serology results from the trial. The self-reporting and scaling of symptoms showed the power of this medication, but the confirmational serology places these important effects on a solid footing. We will now publish the data and present it at international meetings in Busan (South Korea), Hong Kong (China) and Chicago (USA) as we plan follow-up studies."

ABI previously reported that, among study subjects who had received seasonal influenza vaccine prior to enrollment, those treated with interferon had a significantly lower incidence of influenza-like illness during the study, compared to subjects in the placebo group, suggesting that IFN treatment enhanced the effectiveness of the vaccine.

In another recent news release, ABI announced that, among subjects who were at least 55 years old, the incidence of influenza-like illness was significantly reduced in those treated with interferon, compared to subjects in the placebo group. This finding is important because older patients are known to be at-risk for severe complications from influenza and have a reduced interferon response when infected.

About Amarillo Biosciences
Amarillo Biosciences, Inc. is a U.S. biotechnology firm operating in global partnership with the Hayashibara Group, which also holds 5.9% of Amarillo Biosciences shares and has provided over $18 million in loans, grants and equity investments. The Company's primary focus is extensive and ongoing R&D into the use of low-dose, orally administered interferon as a treatment for a variety of conditions, including influenza, hepatitis C, chronic cough, and opportunistic infections in patients who are HIV positive. In its 25-year history, the Company has invested nearly $40 million to establish oral interferon as a therapeutic agent. The majority of those funds were invested in clinical trials in an effort to achieve FDA approval for interferon. Additional information is available on the web site at

Except for the historical information contained herein, the matters discussed in this news release are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, including uncertainties related to product development, uncertainties related to the need for regulatory and other government approvals, dependence on proprietary technology, uncertainty of market acceptance of oral interferon or the Company's other product candidates and other risks detailed from time to time in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. In particular, see "Item 1. Description of Business" and "Item 7A. Qualitative and Quantitative Disclosures About Market Risk" of the Company's Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2009.

Contact Information

  • Investor Relations:
    Philippe Niemetz
    PAN Consultants, Ltd.
    Tel: 800-477-7570; 212-344-6464
    Fax: 212-618-1276

    Joseph M. Cummins, DVM, PhD
    Amarillo Biosciences, Inc.
    Tel: 806-376-1741 x 13
    Fax: 806-376-9301