TAMPA, FL--June 1, 2007--Accentia Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ABPI; Accentia) reports that the Mayo Medical and Graduate Schools and the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute have been awarded a National Institute of Health (NIH) grant of $2.4 million for a project entitled "The Pathogenesis of Chronic Rhinosinusitis." The grant, in part, is to support identification of which antigens of the Alternaria fungus are responsible for the inflammation of chronic sinusitis (CS). Accentia is the exclusive licensee to the Mayo patents covering the use of intranasal antifungals to treat chronic sinusitis using an already-approved antifungal, amphotericin B. for the life of the patents in the US and EU Accentia has also extended its exclusive option agreement with Mayo for worldwide rights to any and all other prescription antifungals for CS until December 6, 2008. Moreover, Accentia has a right of first refusal on any immunologic treatments developed based on identification of the specific fungal antigens responsible for CS and asthma.
The grant includes research on Alternaria alternata, the fungus that triggers the inflammatory response in susceptible patients with CS. The grant project will focus on identifying which antigens of Alternaria are the cause of CS. The funding of the program is a significant commitment of resources by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), a part of the National Institutes of Health. Because awarding of this grant is a peer-reviewed process, it represents a significant indication of the growing acceptance of the fungal etiology for CS.
The goal of the project is to positively impact treatment, clinical decisions, and medical care costs involving CS, as well as develop a better understanding of the mechanisms of the disease. Principal Investigator Hirohito Kita, professor of medicine at the Mayo Medical and Graduate Schools, will lead the project at Mayo Clinic, while Dr. Chris Lawren
Contact: Janet Vasquez
The Investor Relations Group