454 Life Sciences Presents Detection Breakthrough at XIV International HIV Drug Resistance Workshop - 454's ultra-deep sequencing able to detect

low levels of drug resistant HIV -



    BRANFORD, Conn., June 9 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- 454 Life Sciences, a
 majority-owned subsidiary of CuraGen Corporation (Nasdaq:   CRGN), reported
 today that scientists from the Company presented a poster detailing a
 potentially new application for the Company's technology -- ultra-deep
 sequencing of the HIV virus.  The poster, in addition to an oral presentation
 on Friday, June 10, at the XIV International HIV Drug Resistance Workshop in
 Quebec City, Quebec, Canada, discusses the ability of 454's sequencing
 platform to rapidly, reproducibly and accurately detect minor HIV variants
 that contain drug resistance mutations present in HIV-infected patients.
     Identifying and understanding HIV drug resistance is necessary to ensure
 the appropriate use of antiretroviral drugs and to minimize the spread of
 resistance.  In the United States, up to 50% of HIV-infected patients
 receiving drug therapy are infected with drug resistant virus.  Improved
 detection of minor variants in the HIV virus could ultimately assist
 researchers in the development of new HIV therapeutics and help physicians
 tailor drug regimens for HIV-infected patients.
     454's technology can identify and accurately quantify sequence variants
 present in very low levels, comfortably less than 1% of any mutation.  In
 comparison, traditional technologies are unable to detect minor HIV variants
 that confer drug resistance unless greater than 10-20% of a circulating virus
 contains a known genetic mutation.
     "The ability to detect minor populations of drug resistant HIV strains
 circulating in patients' blood could greatly facilitate researchers'
 understanding of HIV drug resistance," commented Michael Kozal, M.D.,
 Associate Professor of Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine. "454's
 technology allows us to see emerging variations at a level not currently
 possible with traditional sequencing technology and could foster a better
 understanding of response to antiretroviral therapy and lead to improved
 treatment regimens for patients."
     The poster and anticipated oral presentation, entitled "Ultra-Deep
 Sequencing of HIV from Drug Resistant Patients," detail the use of 454 Life
 Sciences' nano-based technology to produce 1000-fold more sequencing reads per
 run than traditional sequencing methods achieving massive over-sampling of the
 HIV virus and enabling the identification of low-level mutations in different
 sequence variants.  The proof-of-concept study demonstrates 454's ability to
 perform ultra-deep sequencing potentially allowing for a more sensitive and
 accurate method to determine HIV genetic variations.
 
     About 454 Life Sciences
     454 Life Sciences is commercializing novel instrumentation and services
 for rapidly and comprehensively conducting high-throughput nucleotide
 sequencing, with specific application to sequencing of whole genomes and
 ultra-deep sequencing of target genes.
 
     454's system enables one individual to prepare and sequence an entire
 genome after performing a single sample preparation, irrespective of the size
 of the genome being studied.  The hallmark of 454's technology is the
 nanotechnology based approach to sequencing which allows a single instrument
 to produce over 20 million nucleotide bases per four hour run, totaling more
 that 100 times the capacity of instruments using the current macro-scale
 technology.  454's technology is based on integrating proprietary picoliter-
 technologies (a picoliter is one trillionth of a liter), patented light
 emitting sequencing chemistries, and state of the art informatics.  The
 patented Genome Sequencing System utilizes this technology and is a scalable,
 ultra-fast and cost-effective system with applications for whole genome
 sequencing and ultra-deep sequencing of genes of interest.
     454 is marketing its sequencing services, instrument systems and
 proprietary reagents to pharmaceutical, biotechnology, biodefense, and
 bioindustrial companies as well as to universities and government agencies.
 In May 2005, 454 entered into an exclusive worldwide distribution agreement
 with Roche for the promotion, sale, and distribution of 454 Life Sciences'
 nanotechnology-based Genome Sequencing Systems, including proprietary kits and
 reagents, to all markets with the exception of regulated diagnostics.  454
 Life Sciences is a majority owned subsidiary of CuraGen Corporation (Nasdaq:  
 CRGN).  Additional information is available at http://www.454.com.
 
     Safe Harbor
     This press release contains forward-looking statements including
 statements about the ability of 454's sequencing platform to ultimately assist
 researchers in the development of new HIV therapeutics and help physicians
 tailor drug regimens for HIV-infected patients; the possibility that detection
 of minor populations of drug resistant HIV strains circulating in patients'
 blood could greatly facilitate researchers' understanding of HIV drug
 resistance; 454 technology's ability to foster a better understanding of
 response to antiretroviral therapy and lead to improved treatment regimens for
 patients; and 454's ability to allow for a more sensitive and accurate method
 to determine HIV genetic variations. Such statements are based on our current
 expectations and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could
 cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-
 looking statements. 454 and CuraGen caution investors that there can be no
 assurance that actual results or business conditions will not differ
 materially from those projected or suggested in such forward-looking
 statements as a result of various factors, including, but not limited to, the
 following:  the early stage of development of 454's products and technologies,
 CuraGen's stage of development as a genomics-based pharmaceutical company,
 uncertainties of clinical trials, government regulation and healthcare reform,
 technological uncertainty and product development risks, product liability
 exposure, uncertainty of additional funding, 454's and CuraGen's history of
 incurring losses and the uncertainty of achieving profitability, CuraGen's
 reliance on research collaborations and strategic alliances, competition,
 patent infringement claims against 454's and CuraGen's products, processes and
 technologies, the ability to protect 454's and CuraGen's patents and
 proprietary rights and uncertainties relating to commercialization rights.
 Please refer to CuraGen's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended
 March 31, 2005 for a complete description of these risks.  454 and CuraGen
 disclaim any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking
 statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or
 otherwise, unless required by law.
 
     454 Life Sciences Contact:
      Peter Dacey
      Vice President, Finance
      info@454.com
      (877) 890-GNOM
 
 

SOURCE CuraGen; 454 Life Sciences

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