Panacos Pharmaceuticals and the National Cancer Institute Initiate Joint HIV Drug Discovery Program

Collaboration Will Utilize Panacos's Proprietary Drug Screening Technology

To Identify HIV Fusion Inhibitors



Apr 11, 2001, 01:00 ET from Panacos Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

    GAITHERSBURG, Md., April 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Panacos Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
 (Panacos) announced today that it has signed a Cooperative Research and
 Development Agreement (CRADA) with the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to
 discover drug candidates that block the initial step in HIV infection --
 fusion of the virus to human cells.  Under this CRADA, Panacos and the
 Laboratory of Drug Discovery Research and Development (LDDRD) of NCI will
 develop high through-put screening assays based on Panacos's proprietary
 fusion inhibitor discovery technology.  Panacos and the LDDRD will then screen
 the NCI Natural Products Repository, a library of approximately 100,000
 extracts of plant and marine organisms sourced from around the world.  The
 goal is to identify small molecule fusion inhibitors suitable for further
 development as drugs to treat HIV/AIDS.  The CRADA grants Panacos an option to
 an exclusive license to commercialize drug candidates that are discovered
 under the CRADA research plan.
     Currently approved anti-HIV drugs target the virus's reverse transcriptase
 or protease enzymes, however the increasing frequency of drug-resistant
 strains is a major problem in treating the disease.  "Our focus is on the
 identification of compounds that block HIV entry into human cells and which
 are effective against all HIV strains including those resistant to approved
 drugs," said Dr. Carl Wild, Panacos's VP of R & D and Principal Investigator
 on the CRADA.  "This new collaboration enables us to work with one of the
 world's leading natural product drug discovery groups to screen the huge
 diversity of chemical structures in NCI's extract library."
     NCI's LDDRD was founded in 1990 by Dr. Michael Boyd, who led the
 development of NCI's cell-based anti-tumor and anti-HIV screens and the
 natural products repository.  Dr. Boyd and Dr. James McMahon, who leads the
 Laboratory's Screening and Dereplication Section, will be NCI's co-Principal
 Investigators on this CRADA.  The LDDRD team has a well-documented track
 record in the discovery of novel anti-HIV compounds, some of which are now in
 clinical development.
     This CRADA fits well with Panacos's strategic focus on the discovery of
 novel antiviral drugs for a variety of medically important viruses through its
 Fusion Inhibitor and Natural Products Technology Platforms.  The Company has a
 long-standing collaboration with Professor K.H. Lee of the University of North
 Carolina at Chapel Hill to identify antiviral compounds by screening plant
 extracts, then designing synthetic analogs with improved in vitro and in vivo
 profiles.  This collaboration led to the discovery of Panacos's lead product
 candidates, PA-344 and PA-457.  These potent HIV inhibitors with novel
 mechanisms of action are currently in pre-clinical testing.  In addition to
 its drug discovery programs, Panacos is also pursuing a novel antiviral
 vaccine technology through its Virus Vaccine Platform.
 
     Formerly a subsidiary of Boston Biomedica Inc. (Nasdaq:   BBII), Panacos
 became an independent private company in November 2000, following a round of
 venture capital financing when it received investments from A. M. Pappas &
 Associates of Durham, North Carolina and Ampersand Ventures of Wellesley,
 Massachusetts.  Boston Biomedica retains a minority equity holding in Panacos.
     For more information on Panacos Pharmaceuticals, please visit our website:
 http://www.panacos.com , or contact us by email: info@panacos.com.
 
 

SOURCE Panacos Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
    GAITHERSBURG, Md., April 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Panacos Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
 (Panacos) announced today that it has signed a Cooperative Research and
 Development Agreement (CRADA) with the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to
 discover drug candidates that block the initial step in HIV infection --
 fusion of the virus to human cells.  Under this CRADA, Panacos and the
 Laboratory of Drug Discovery Research and Development (LDDRD) of NCI will
 develop high through-put screening assays based on Panacos's proprietary
 fusion inhibitor discovery technology.  Panacos and the LDDRD will then screen
 the NCI Natural Products Repository, a library of approximately 100,000
 extracts of plant and marine organisms sourced from around the world.  The
 goal is to identify small molecule fusion inhibitors suitable for further
 development as drugs to treat HIV/AIDS.  The CRADA grants Panacos an option to
 an exclusive license to commercialize drug candidates that are discovered
 under the CRADA research plan.
     Currently approved anti-HIV drugs target the virus's reverse transcriptase
 or protease enzymes, however the increasing frequency of drug-resistant
 strains is a major problem in treating the disease.  "Our focus is on the
 identification of compounds that block HIV entry into human cells and which
 are effective against all HIV strains including those resistant to approved
 drugs," said Dr. Carl Wild, Panacos's VP of R & D and Principal Investigator
 on the CRADA.  "This new collaboration enables us to work with one of the
 world's leading natural product drug discovery groups to screen the huge
 diversity of chemical structures in NCI's extract library."
     NCI's LDDRD was founded in 1990 by Dr. Michael Boyd, who led the
 development of NCI's cell-based anti-tumor and anti-HIV screens and the
 natural products repository.  Dr. Boyd and Dr. James McMahon, who leads the
 Laboratory's Screening and Dereplication Section, will be NCI's co-Principal
 Investigators on this CRADA.  The LDDRD team has a well-documented track
 record in the discovery of novel anti-HIV compounds, some of which are now in
 clinical development.
     This CRADA fits well with Panacos's strategic focus on the discovery of
 novel antiviral drugs for a variety of medically important viruses through its
 Fusion Inhibitor and Natural Products Technology Platforms.  The Company has a
 long-standing collaboration with Professor K.H. Lee of the University of North
 Carolina at Chapel Hill to identify antiviral compounds by screening plant
 extracts, then designing synthetic analogs with improved in vitro and in vivo
 profiles.  This collaboration led to the discovery of Panacos's lead product
 candidates, PA-344 and PA-457.  These potent HIV inhibitors with novel
 mechanisms of action are currently in pre-clinical testing.  In addition to
 its drug discovery programs, Panacos is also pursuing a novel antiviral
 vaccine technology through its Virus Vaccine Platform.
 
     Formerly a subsidiary of Boston Biomedica Inc. (Nasdaq:   BBII), Panacos
 became an independent private company in November 2000, following a round of
 venture capital financing when it received investments from A. M. Pappas &
 Associates of Durham, North Carolina and Ampersand Ventures of Wellesley,
 Massachusetts.  Boston Biomedica retains a minority equity holding in Panacos.
     For more information on Panacos Pharmaceuticals, please visit our website:
 http://www.panacos.com , or contact us by email: info@panacos.com.
 
 SOURCE  Panacos Pharmaceuticals, Inc.