CALGARY, Alberta–(BUSINESS WIRE)–March 28, 2000–Oncolytics Biotech Inc. (“Oncolytics” or “the Company”) (CDNX:ONC) today announced the results of a pilot canine (dog) study examining the use of the human reovirus – trademarked REOLYSIN – in treating spontaneously occurring tumours in dogs. REOLYSIN is a compound being developed by the Company as a potential cancer therapeutic for humans.

The objective of the study was to examine generally if REOLYSIN was safe to administer to large mammals at a dose equivalent to one of the doses that will be used in the up-coming human clinical study, and specifically to determine if REOLYSIN could cause tumour clearing or tumour regression. Six companion pet dogs of various breeds, sizes, and sexes with histologically confirmed malignancies of different kinds were treated with intralesional (directly into the tumour) injections of REOLYSIN. A collaborator of the Company, Dr. David Szentimrey, DVM and surgical oncologist, performed all of the injections. The overall health of the animals was, and continues to be, monitored. None of the treated animals presented any observable side effects as a result of administration of the reovirus. In a two to three week period post last injection the tumours were resected where possible and examined. It was observed that in five out of six treated animals there was a measurable tumour response as measured by either tumour regression or tumour clearing. In addition, the two animals with systemic disease experienced remote tumour regression.

“We believe that this was an important milestone for the Company” said Dr. Matt Coffey Vice President and CFO of Oncolytics. “This is our first examination of the use of REOLYSIN in large mammals with spontaneously occurring tumours, and we are delighted with the results.”

Oncolytics is a biotechnology company whose focus is the development of the reovirus known as REOLYSIN as a potential cancer therapeutic. The human reovirus infects and kills cancer cells with an activated Ras pathway. Ras is an important component of a pathway controlling normal growth and differentiation of a cell and when activated, may account for a large proportion of all human tumors. Researchers believe that targeting this pathway could have broad potential in the treatment of many cancers. Oncolytics researchers demonstrated that reovirus was selectively able to kill cancer cells with this particular activation and successfully demonstrated that the virus could kill human cancer cells in vitro derived from breast, prostate, pancreatic, and brain tumors, as well as being able to treat tumors successfully in a number of animal models. Oncolytics is anticipating the commencement of a Phase I clinical trial on reovirus in the first half of 2000.

This release contains certain forward-looking statements which involve known and unknown risks, delays, uncertainties and other factors not under the Company’s control which may cause actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from the results, performance or expectations implied by these forward-looking statements.

The Canadian Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.


Comments are closed.