iCo Therapeutics Receives FDA Clearance to Initiate Clinical Trial in Diabetic Macular Edema

Jan 22, 2007, 00:00 ET from iCo Therapeutics Inc.

    VANCOUVER, Jan. 22 /PRNewswire/ - iCo Therapeutics Inc. announced today
 that the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted the
 Investigational New Drug (IND) application for iCo-007 to treat diabetic
 macular edema.
     "The success of our IND application brings iCo one step closer to
 creating an effective treatment for diabetic macular edema," stated Andrew
 Rae, President and CEO of iCo Therapeutics. "We look forward to initiating
 our Phase I clinical trial for diffuse diabetic macular edema in the first
 half of this year."
     Designed and discovered by Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc., iCo-007 is a
 second-generation antisense drug that targets c-Raf kinase messenger RNA.
 iCo-007 is expected to decrease the edema in the retina by decreasing the
 signaling of various growth factors such as VEGF that signal through the
 c-raf kinase / MAP kinase pathway. iCo Therapeutics licensed the product in
 August 2005.
     Diabetic Macular Edema
     About 45% of diabetics will suffer from diabetic retinopathy - a
 condition resulting from changes in the blood vessels in the eye. Diabetic
 macular edema is a swelling of the small area in the centre of the retina
 and causes difficulty in seeing fine details clearly. The swelling is
 caused by fluid leaking from abnormal or fragile blood vessels and can
 result in conditions from mild vision loss to blindness.
     iCo Therapeutics Inc. is an emerging, Vancouver-based biotechnology
 company focused on developing pre-existing drugs for a range of new
 conditions affecting isolated biological environments - areas such as the
 eye, spinal cord, or joints - where locally-administered application of
 these therapies would have minimal systemic distribution and fewer safety
     For more information, visit the company website at:
     CONTACT: Business Development Contact: Dr. John Clement, CT&DO, (778)
 688-0644; Finance,Investor Contact: Mr. John Meekison, CFO, (604) 602-9414;
 Media Contact: Amanda Smith, Principal, Smith Biotech, (778) 846-4116

SOURCE iCo Therapeutics Inc.