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Animal studies show CA4P suppresses development and induces regression of ocular neovascularization

Watertown, Mass., July 31, 2003 OXiGENE, Inc. (NASDAQ: OXGN, XSSE: OXGN) today announced the results of independent animal studies demonstrating the potential role of the Company's lead compound, Combretastatin A4 Prodrug (CA4P), in preventing and treating certain retinal degenerative diseases. Findings of the study are published in the current issue of the peer-reviewed journal Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science (IOVS).

The studies were conducted at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine by a team of researchers including Peter A. Campochiaro, M.D., a professor of ophthalmology at the school's renowned Wilmer Eye Institute. Dr. Campochiaro and Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology Quan Dong Nguyen, M.D. are leading the current Phase I/II clinical trial of CA4P in patients with wet age-related macular degeneration, known as wet AMD. Between 2 million and 3 million people in the United States have significant vision loss caused by wet AMD.

"The pre-clinical research produced by Dr. Campochiaro and his colleagues, as well as several other pre-clinical ophthalmic models using CA4P, provided the impetus for OXiGENE to move CA4P into human trials at Johns Hopkins," said Fred Driscoll, OXiGENE's president and CEO. "We are very pleased that Dr. Campochiaro considered the data from this study compelling enough to take CA4P into trials at one of the world's leading research institutions."

The study was designed to gauge CA4P's ability to suppress the development of choroidal neovascularization (CNV), a condition in which aberrant blood vessels beneath the retina leak blood and fluid into the retina. CNV is the primary cause of severe vision loss in patients with retinal degenerative diseases such as wet AMD. Researchers conducted experiments using transgenic mice with CNV caused by an over expression of vascular endothelial growth factor in the retina (rho/VEGF mice) and mice with laser-induced rupture of Bruch's memb
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Contact: Scott Solomon
ssolomon@investorrelations.com
617-542-5300
Sharon Merrill Associates, Inc.
31-Jul-2003


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