Medicago and PATH collaborate on broad coverage influenza vaccines for the developing world

Oct 13, 2010, 07:00 ET from Medicago Inc.

QUEBEC CITY, Oct. 13 /PRNewswire/ - Medicago Inc. (TSX: MDG), a biotechnology company focused on developing highly effective and affordable vaccines based on proprietary manufacturing technologies and Virus-Like Particles (VLPs), today announced that it has been awarded $946,000 in funding by U.S.-based PATH pursuant to a research collaboration agreement. Medicago and PATH will work together on a broad coverage influenza vaccine based on Medicago's proprietary plant-based Virus-Like Particle (VLP) technologies for the developing world.

PATH is an international global health nonprofit organization that collaborates with private and public-sector partners as part of its influenza vaccine project to advance the development of promising new influenza vaccines that can be affordable and accessible for people in low-resource countries.

"We are very proud to be selected to collaborate with PATH on a vaccine that has the potential to impact health conditions in the developing world. This collaboration further recognizes the promise of our VLPs," said Andy Sheldon, President and CEO of Medicago. "Moreover, this collaboration with PATH is in line with our global strategy of development in emerging countries where we believe our plant-based manufacturing technology can offer a unique cost-effective solution."

"A technology that can respond quickly with high capacity, and produce safe, affordable and efficacious vaccines against influenza for low-resource countries is of very high value," said Dr. Kathleen Neuzil, director of PATH's influenza vaccine project. "This collaboration with Medicago fits well with our goal to make influenza vaccines more affordable and accessible for the global population."

About PATH

PATH is an international nonprofit organization that creates sustainable, culturally relevant solutions, enabling communities worldwide to break longstanding cycles of poor health. By collaborating with diverse public- and private-sector partners, PATH helps provide appropriate health technologies and vital strategies that change the way people think and act. PATH's work improves global health and well-being. For more information, please visit www.path.org.

About Medicago

Medicago is committed to provide highly effective and affordable vaccines based on proprietary Virus-Like Particle (VLP) and manufacturing technologies. Medicago is developing VLP vaccines to protect against H5N1 pandemic influenza, using a transient expression system which produces recombinant vaccine antigens in non-transgenic plants. This technology has potential to offer advantages of speed and cost over competitive technologies. It could deliver a vaccine for testing in about a month after the identification and reception of genetic sequences from a pandemic strain. This production time frame has the potential to allow vaccination of the population before the first wave of a pandemic strikes and to supply large volumes of vaccine antigens to the world market. Additional information about Medicago is available at www.medicago.com.

Forward Looking Statements

This news release includes certain forward-looking statements that are based upon current expectations, which involve risks and uncertainties associated with Medicago's business and the environment in which the business operates. Any statements contained herein that are not statements of historical facts may be deemed to be forward-looking, including those identified by the expressions "anticipate", "believe", "plan", "estimate", "expect", "intend", and similar expressions to the extent they relate to Medicago or its management. The forward-looking statements are not historical facts, but reflect Medicago's current expectations regarding future results or events. These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from current expectations, including the matters discussed under "Risks Factors and Uncertainties" in Medicago's Annual Information Form filed on March 24, 2010 with the regulatory authorities. Medicago assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements, or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those reflected in the forward-looking statements.

SOURCE Medicago Inc.