BioCis Pharma and Lx Therapies Combine to Create Laurantis Pharma Oy

New specialty pharmaceutical company will target inflammatory diseases and cancers

May 25, 2011 11:43 AM Eastern Daylight Time

TURKU, Finland--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--BioCis Pharma Oy and Oy Lx Therapies Ltd. announced today that the companies have combined to create Laurantis Pharma Oy ("Laurantis Pharma"), a clinical-stage specialty pharmaceutical development company. The new entity has a broad portfolio of first-in-class products based on two proprietary technologies. The Company's lead products target the treatment of a variety of inflammatory diseases and conditions including atopic dermatitis, dry eye syndrome, interstitial cystitis, and lymphatic disorders, as well as the treatment of bladder cancer. In connection with the creation of the new Company, Riku Rautsola, PhD, was appointed as President and CEO of Laurantis Pharma. In addition, Inveni Capital and Helsinki University Funds made an investment in Laurantis Pharma.

"We are excited about the potential created by forming this new company. We have a broad portfolio, cost-efficient operation model, and several upcoming clinical milestones in the next couple of years," said Dr. Rautsola. "This provides the unique opportunity to build Laurantis Pharma from an early clinical development company to a successful specialty pharmaceutical company in the coming years."

Riku Rautsola has more than 25 years of international biopharmaceutical experience, most recently as President and CEO of VIRxSYS Corporation in the United States. Previously, Dr. Rautsola held various senior executive positions, among others, at Boehringer Ingelheim, Beiersdorf and Fresenius and served on the board of directors of the Finnish drug development company Biotie Therapies.

"We are very excited about having the capacity to a build a competitive specialty pharmaceutical company with a strong technology base. Laurantis Pharma is well positioned to reach several significant clinical milestones for its lead products in the next two to three years," said Lasse Leino, COO of Laurantis Pharma and previously CEO of BioCis Pharma.

Laurantis Pharma's pipeline includes proprietary and patent-protected formulations and applications of cis-urocanicacid (cis-UCA), a locally acting anti-inflammatory and anti-proliferative agent. Clinical candidates include an emulsion cream for atopic dermatitis (human and veterinary use), an intravesical product for the treatment of non-muscle invasive bladder cancer and inflammatory conditions of the bladder such as interstitialcystitis, and an eye drop product for dry eye syndrome. The Company is also developing LymfactinTM, a vascular endothelial growth factor C (VEGF-C) in an adenoviral vector, for the treatment of secondary lymphedema. The first indication will be breast cancer-associated lymphedema.

About Laurantis Pharma

 Laurantis Pharma Oy is a privately held specialty pharmaceutical company based in Finland. Laurantis Pharma Oy was formed in 2010 through the merger of two independent companies, BioCis Pharma Oy and Oy Lx Therapies Ltd. More information can be found at www.laurantis.com.

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