SAN MARINO, Calif., Feb. 15, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Viral Genetics, Inc. (Pink Sheets: VRAL) announced today that lead researcher Dr. M. Karen Newell Rogers and Advisor Mr. Richard Gerstner will receive the Lauren F. Brooks Hope Award, presented by Time for Lyme, Inc. The award presentation is set for the Illusions of Lyme Gala, April 2, 2011, in Stamford, CT. Dr. Newell Rogers is being recognized for her research on Targeted Peptide treatment for Lyme Disease at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and Texas A&M University. Mr. Gerstner helped Dr. Newell Rogers to initiate research on a treatment for the disease and has supported her research with funding.
"We are very proud of Dr. Newell Rogers' work and appreciative of the support that Mr. Gerstner has provided," said Viral Genetics' CEO, Haig Keledjian. "This award is a confirmation that Dr. Newell Rogers' research into a treatment for Lyme Disease is showing results."
"I would like to personally thank Mr. Gerstner for his original gift," added Monica Ord, Viral Genetics' Senior Vice President for Corporate Development and Communications. "Since that day, and with the steadfast support of Tyme for Lyme, Dr. Newell Rogers has uncovered not only a promising treatment but new information about this disease that is invaluable. We have never had such a willingness of immediate support in any other disease as with the Lyme community. We applaud you."
Dr. Newell Rogers and Viral Genetics are now completing the development of a molecule for the treatment of Lyme disease. This molecule is comparable to the Company's APi1177 Targeted Peptide molecule being studied for HIV/AIDS, which appears to rely on a similar underlying mechanism to assist in the control of chronic inflammation believed to be responsible for certain symptoms of Lyme Disease. Preliminary animal studies of this compound showed positive results in decreasing levels of inflammation in Borrelia infection in animals. Viral Genetics' goal is to initiate review of this drug candidate by the United States Food and Drug Administration through a pre-IND filing in 2011. Dr. Newell Rogers' research has been funded, in part, by grants from Time for Lyme, Inc., Mr. Richard Gerstner, and funding from Turn the Corner Foundation.
M. Karen Newell Rogers, Ph.D., is currently the Raleigh R. White Jr. Endowed Professor of Surgical Research at Scott and White Hospital's Department of Surgery, affiliated with Texas A&M University Health Science Center's College of Medicine, located in Temple, Texas. She was previously at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, where she began her research into Lyme Disease.
Richard T. Gerstner serves on the Advisory Board of Viral Genetics and is also on the Advisory Committee to Columbia University's Lyme and Tick Borne Diseases Research Center. He has served in executive management in numerous technology companies, including IBM and Telular Corporation.
About Viral Genetics, Inc.
San Marino, California-based Viral Genetics discovers drug therapies. Founded in 1994, the biotech company is researching treatments for HIV/AIDS, Lyme Disease, Strep, Staph and drug resistant tumors. A majority-owned subsidiary called VG Energy (www.vgenergy.net) is dedicated to exploring biofuel and agricultural applications for one of the technologies in its licensed portfolio. Online at www.viralgenetics.com
About Time for Lyme
Time For Lyme, Inc. (TFL), formerly The Greenwich Lyme Disease Task Force, is a 501(c)(3), all volunteer, nonprofit organization, and an affiliate of the national Lyme Disease Association (LDA). The organization promotes education about tick-borne illness, including detection, prevention, and advocacy for students and families. Online at www.timeforlyme.org.
SAFE HARBOR FOR FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS:
This news release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties associated with financial projections, budgets, milestone timelines, clinical development, regulatory approvals, and other risks described by Viral Genetics, Inc. from time to time in its periodic reports. None of Viral Genetics' drug compounds are approved by the US Food and Drug Administration or by any comparable regulatory agencies elsewhere in the world. While Viral Genetics believes that the forward-looking statements and underlying assumptions reasonable, any of the assumptions could be inaccurate, including, but not limited to, the ability of Viral Genetics to establish the efficacy of any of its drug therapies in the treatment of any disease or health condition, the development of studies and strategies leading to commercialization of those drug compounds in the United States, the obtaining of funding required to carry out the development plan, the completion of studies and tests on time or at all, and the successful outcome of such studies or tests. Therefore, there can be no assurance that the forward-looking statements included in this release will prove to be accurate. In light of the significant uncertainties inherent in the forward-looking statements included herein, the forward-looking statements should not be regarded as a representation by Viral Genetics or any other person that the objectives and plans of Viral Genetics will be achieved.
Contact: Haig Keledjian, Viral Genetics
T: (626) 334-5310
SOURCE Viral Genetics, Inc.