GAITHERSBURG, Md., Dec 20, 2006 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX News Network/ -- MedImmune, Inc.
(Nasdaq: MEDI) announced today that it has licensed its proprietary reverse
genetics intellectual property to CSL Limited (CSL) of Australia to support
the development of new human seasonal and pandemic influenza vaccines.
Reverse genetics is a method by which viruses such as influenza can be
generated entirely from segments of DNA. MedImmune will receive an upfront
payment and has the potential to receive royalties on any vaccine stockpiles
or other product sales using the reverse genetics technology.
"MedImmune is pleased to make this technology available to our vaccine
development colleagues at CSL," said Edward T. Mathers, MedImmune's executive
vice president, corporate development and venture. "We believe that this
technology is an important breakthrough for the manufacturing of all influenza
vaccines, because it is more efficient and reliable than current methods used
to produce vaccine strains. For pandemic vaccines, reverse genetics can be
particularly important and necessary because it does not require vaccine
manufacturers to work directly with the infectious pandemic strain, such as
H5N1, rather only segments of its genome."
MedImmune is collaborating with a number of entities to explore vaccine
development techniques that could be used in the event of a pandemic flu
outbreak. Earlier this year, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) began
enrolling participants in a Phase 1 study of an intranasal H5N1 influenza
vaccine candidate based on MedImmune's live, attenuated vaccine technology,
using reverse genetics technology. Investigators at MedImmune and Johns
Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Center for Immunization Research,
where the study is being conducted, are hopeful that a live, attenuated
intranasal influenza vaccine would be as effective against potential pandemic
A strains as it has been shown to be against seasonal matched and mismatched A
strains of influenza.
The CSL Group has a combined heritage of outstanding contributions to
medicine and human health with more than 90 years experience in the
development and manufacture of vaccines and plasma protein biotherapies. CSL's
strong commitment to funding research and development of protein based
biological medicines for unmet medical needs underpins its continuing growth.
Headquartered in Melbourne Australia, the CSL Group includes CSL Bioplasma,
CSL Biotherapies and CSL Behring incorporating ZLB Plasma Services. With major
facilities in Australia, Germany, Switzerland and the U.S., CSL has
approximately 7500 employees working in 26 countries.
About MedImmune, Inc.
MedImmune strives to provide better medicines to patients, new medical
options for physicians, rewarding careers to employees, and increased value to
shareholders. Dedicated to advancing science and medicine to help people live
better lives, the company is focused on the areas of infectious diseases,
cancer and inflammatory diseases. With more than 2,500 employees worldwide,
MedImmune is headquartered in Maryland. For more information, visit the
company's website at http://www.medimmune.com.
This announcement contains, in addition to historical information, certain
forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, in
particular, related to the development of potential influenza vaccines using
reverse genetics. Such statements reflect management's current views and are
based on certain assumptions. Actual results could differ materially from
those currently anticipated as a result of a number of factors, including
risks and uncertainties discussed in MedImmune's filings with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission. There can be no assurance that such
development efforts will succeed, that such vaccines will receive required
regulatory clearance or that, even if such regulatory clearance is received,
such vaccines will ultimately achieve commercial success. There can be no
assurance that even if such a vaccine is commercially available, that it will
protect against a particular influenza strain or prevent a pandemic.
SOURCE MedImmune, Inc.
all of MedImmune, Inc.