(BW HealthWire) — IDEC Pharmaceuticals Corp. (Nasdaq:IDPH) announced today it will be honored with the first annual Peter McCuen Cancer Research Excellence Award, presented by Informed Investors, Inc., a California-based producer of investor conferences. The award recognizes the company’s groundbreaking research and development of Rituxan(R)(Rituximab), the first new, single-agent therapy for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 11 years and the first monoclonal antibody approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of cancer in the United States. IDEC discovered Rituxan, which was developed in collaboration with Genentech, F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Ltd. of Switzerland and Zenyaku Kogyo Co., Ltd. of Japan.
The award will be received by Antonio J. Grillo-Lopez, M.D., IDEC’s senior vice president and chief medical officer, who was responsible for the clinical development and regulatory strategy for Rituxan.
“We are very proud to receive this award in the name of Peter McCuen for our work on behalf of the thousands of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma patients who benefit from Rituxan,” said Dr. Grillo-Lopez. “The development of Rituxan demonstrates that teamwork among the pharmaceutical industry, lymphoma patients and advocacy groups can bring comfort and hope to lymphoma patients throughout the world.”
The award, which honors McCuen, a community leader and chairman of the advisory board of the UC Davis Cancer Center who died last year of cancer, will be presented at a benefit event for the Cancer Center on Saturday, November 4, at the Sacramento Hilton, 2200 Harvard Street in Sacramento.
On Sunday, November 5, Dr. Grillo-Lopez will give a presentation on behalf of IDEC Pharmaceuticals at the California Capital Cancer Conference (C4), sponsored by Informed Investors. C4 is a stock market forum that allows investors access to senior management of cancer companies. All can attend, either in person or via the web. More information can be found at www.InformedInvestors.com.
Approved by the FDA in November 1997, Rituxan is indicated for the treatment of patients with relapsed or refractory, low-grade or follicular, CD20 positive, B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. There are more than 275,000 patients in the United States with B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas, approximately half of whom are low-grade or follicular lymphoma patients. Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is the second fastest growing cancer in terms of incidences and deaths in the United States and is diagnosed in more than 55,000 men and women each year. To date, Rituxan has been used to treat more than 60,000 patients worldwide. The majority of patients experience infusion-related symptoms with their first Rituxan infusion. These symptoms include, but are not limited to, flu-like fever, chills/rigors, nausea, urticaria, headache, bronchospasm, angioedema and hypotension. These infusion-related symptoms vary in severity and are generally reversible with medical intervention.
IDEC Pharmaceuticals focuses on the commercialization and development of targeted therapies for the treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases. IDEC’s antibody products act chiefly through immune system mechanisms, exerting their effect by binding to specific, readily targeted immune cells in the patient’s blood or lymphatic systems. For a menu of IDEC’s current news releases and quarterly reports or to retrieve a specific release, call (888) 329-2309. On the Internet check the News Center at IDEC’s Website: http://idecpharm.cdmail.biz.
The statements made in this press release contain certain forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual events or results may differ from IDEC’s expectations. For example, the timing, success and cost of preclinical research and clinical studies, the timing, acceptability and review periods for regulatory filings, the timing of and ability to obtain regulatory approval of products, the achievement of future product sales, the level of manufacturing performance and the risk factors listed from time to time in IDEC’s SEC filings including but not limited to its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 1999 and Form 10-Q for the quarter ended June 30, 2000, may affect the actual results achieved by IDEC. These forward-looking statements represent the company’s judgment as of the date of this release. The company disclaims, however, any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.
IDEC Pharmaceuticals and Rituxan are registered U.S. trademarks of the company. The company’s headquarters is located at 3030 Callan Road, San Diego, CA 92121.
IDEC Pharmaceuticals’ press releases are available at no charge through Business Wire’s News on Demand Plus. For a menu of IDEC’s current press releases and quarterly reports or to retrieve a specific release, call 888/329-2309. On the Internet, check the News Center at IDEC’s website http//idecpharm.cdmail.biz.
|CONTACT:||IDEC Pharmaceuticals Corp.|