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December 13, 1999

Onyvax Limited, Cancer Research Campaign Technology, Institute of Cancer Research and the Royal Marsden Hospital Announce Initiative in Prostate Cancer Research

13 December 1999. Onyvax Limited (London, UK), Cancer Research Campaign Technology (CRCT, UK), the Institute of Cancer Research ('the Institute', UK) and the Royal Marsden Hospital (RMH,UK) have entered into a collaboration for the study of prostate cancer. The programme is focused on genetic changes that underlie the development and progression of prostate cancer, thereby providing targets for novel therapies.

Onyvax will use its expertise in the field of cell immortalization to generate novel cell-lines from cancer tissue provided by RMH. The Institute will use these cell-lines, as well as others owned by Onyvax, in studies into the genetics of prostate cancer. Onyvax retains ownership of the cell-lines and has rights to discoveries made by the Institute in support of its cancer vaccine programmes. CRCT retains rights to discoveries in fields other than cancer immunotherapy.

Onyvax is a biotechnology company developing vaccines and other therapies which direct the immune system to attack cancer cells. Dr. Andrew Sutton, Head of R&D for Onyvax said 'We are excited to be working alongside two of the UK's premier cancer research organisations. This agreement will greatly enhance Onyvax's vaccine programmes as well as fundamental research into prostate cancer. We have access to over 25 prostate cell-lines, many proprietary to Onyvax, possibly representing the most comprehensive collection in the world ".

Professor Colin Cooper, head of the Intitutes's Haddow Laboratories said 'The establishment of cell-lines from prostate tissue is extremely difficult and the collaboration with Onyvax will provide us with invaluable new resources. Access to novel cell lines will better enable us to bring our proven capability in the field of genetic discovery to bear in the fight against prostate cancer'.

Background on the ICR

The Institute and the Royal Marsden Hospital (RMH) together constitute Europe's largest comprehensive cancer centre and the second biggest in the world. In 1995, the Institute was involved in the discovery of the breast cancer susceptibility gene BRCA2 and, in 1996, located a gene for predisposition to Wilm's tumour. The Institute is building the UK's first dedicated male urological cancer centre and will house Europe's biggest response to the anticipated upsurge in detected prostate cancer.

Background on Onyvax

Onyvax is a biotechnology company based at St. George's Hospital Medical School (SGHMS) in London. Building on the research of its Research Director, Angus Dalgleish, Professor of Clinical Oncology at SGHMS, Onyvax is developing a range of anti-cancer vaccines. A sixty patient clinical study of its first vaccine, for treating advanced prostate cancer, recently completed enrolment at St George's Hospital. Onyvax was established in 1997 and is backed by venture capital from 3i, Alta Berkeley, S.R. One and the PS Wallenberg Trust.

Background to CRC Technology Ltd

CRC Technology (CRCT) is one of the earliest established technology transfer companies in the UK and a world leader in its specialist field of cancer. CRCT is a wholly owned subsidiary of the UK charity The Cancer Research Campaign (CRC). Working closely with CRC-funded scientists, CRCT ensures that new discoveries in cancer research are turned as rapidly as possible into real benefits for the cancer patient.

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