Pharmacia Announces Closing of SU5416 (semaxanib) Clinical Trials

Feb 08, 2002, 00:00 ET from Pharmacia Corporation

    PEAPACK, N.J., Feb. 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Pharmacia Corporation
 (NYSE:   PHA) announced today the company is closing its SU5416 clinical trial
 program in colorectal cancer under development by its SUGEN, Inc. subsidiary.
 This decision is based on the results from a planned interim efficacy and
 safety analysis of a large phase III study of standard chemotherapy with or
 without SU5416 in the treatment of patients with advanced stage colorectal
 cancer.  This analysis shows that the study will not achieve the defined trial
 endpoints due to a lack of clinical benefit.  The company will also be working
 closely with all other SU5416 study investigators to bring the remaining
 trials to an appropriate conclusion.
     "We remain confident in the potential of the vascular endothelial growth
 factor receptor (VEGF-R) target and anti-angiogenic therapy for the treatment
 of cancer," said Laura K. Shawver, Ph.D., president, SUGEN, Inc.  "Our mission
 is to bring forth novel molecular targeted therapies that provide the best
 possible benefit to patients."
     SU5416, a small molecule angiogenesis signaling inhibitor, was designed to
 block the VEGF-R in the blood vessels, thereby inhibiting the blood supply to
 the tumor.  Based on research validating the role of VEGF-R in cancer
 development, additional studies have evaluated SU5416 in numerous solid tumors
 and hematologic (blood related) cancers, including trials sponsored by the
 National Cancer Institute.
     "Angiogenesis inhibitors remain a promising new way to attack cancer,"
 said Lee Rosen, M.D., UCLA's Jonsson Cancer Center and lead investigator
 SU5416, colorectal cancer.  "It is critical to recognize that the results of
 these SU5416 clinical trials do not invalidate the VEGF-R target or the entire
 angiogenesis field.  Instead, we will take what we have learned from SU5416 in
 order to develop the next generation of compounds and studies."
     Physician or patient inquiries can be directed to 1-800-323-4204.  This
 information can be found on Pharmacia Oncology's website
     Pharmacia Corporation (NYSE:   PHA) is a top-tier global pharmaceutical
 company with a leading agricultural subsidiary.  Pharmacia's innovative
 medicines and other products save lives and enhance health and wellness.
 Pharmacia's 59,000 people work together with many diverse stakeholders to
 bring these benefits to people around the world, and to create new health
 solutions for the future.
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SOURCE Pharmacia Corporation