Avila Therapeutics agreement with NIAID

Press Release: 

WALTHAM, MA – June 8, 2011 –Avila Therapeutics, Inc. a biotechnology company developing targeted covalent drugs that treat diseases through protein silencing, announced that it has entered into a Non‐Clinical Evaluation Agreement to access the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases’ (NIAID’s) preclinical services program to further evaluate AVL‐192, Avila’s targeted, irreversible covalent inhibitor of the HCV protease (NS3). Under the agreement, NIAID‐funded contractors are conducting preclinical studies of AVL‐192 to help enable its future clinical development, and Avila retains exclusive rights to this compound.

“We thank NIAID for their foresight in supporting this innovative program,” said Dr. Juswinder Singh, Chief Scientific Officer of Avila. “NS3 protease is now recognized as a key target of therapeutic intervention in HCV infection, and the ability of AVL‐192 to strike at known drug‐resistant mutations will be a critical feature of next generation protease inhibitors.”

AVL‐192 is a novel, orally‐available compound that rapidly and completely silences the HCV protease through highly selective, irreversible covalent bonding to the target protein. Preclinical data generated by Avila demonstrate that it is highly potent, selective, and effectively inhibits drug‐resistant mutations of HCV protease. AVL‐192 forms an irreversible bond with Cys159, a non‐catalytic amino acid that is present in all variants of HCV protease, thus creating the potential for inhibition across all known HCV genotypes. In addition, AVL‐192 has shown unusually high potency by demonstrating the ability to clear replicon cells as a monotherapy in vitro.

NIAID conducts and supports basic and applied research to better understand, treat, and ultimately prevent infectious, immunologic, and allergic diseases. For more than 60 years, NIAID research has led to new therapies, vaccines, diagnostic tests, and other technologies that have improved the health of millions of people in the United States and around the world.

About Avila Therapeutics™, Inc.

Avila Therapeutics is a clinical‐stage biotechnology company focused on the design and development of targeted covalent drugs to achieve best‐in class outcomes. This approach, called “protein silencing”, cannot be achieved through traditional chemistry techniques. The company’s product pipeline has been built using its proprietary Avilomics™ platform and is currently focused on cancer, viral infection and autoimmune disease. Avila’s most advanced product candidate, AVL‐292, a potential treatment for cancer and autoimmune diseases, is currently in Phase 1 clinical testing. Avila is funded by leading venture capital firms: Abingworth, Advent Venture Partners, Atlas Venture, Novartis Option Fund, and Polaris Venture Partners. For additional information, please visit http://www.avilatx.com.

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