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Avid Bioservices to Manufacture Lead Cancer Stem Cell Antibody for ARIUS

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Avid Bioservices, Inc. has announced it has signed a manufacturing supply and technology transfer agreement with ARIUS Research, Inc. The agreement covers ARIUS' lead cancer stem cell antibody, which targets a novel epitope of CD44 found in breast, colon and prostate cancers.

Avid will begin manufacturing drug supply under current good manufacturing practice (cGMP) regulations for human clinical trials that ARIUS plans to initiate in 2008.

"This new agreement reflects our extensive experience and broad capabilities in manufacturing monoclonal antibodies, as well as the good working relationship we have already developed with the ARIUS team," said F. David King, vice president of business development of Avid.

"It further demonstrates Avid's ability to serve as a premier service partner to innovative life sciences companies by seamlessly integrating our development and production skills with our clients' needs," Mr. King added.

"Avid's proven expertise in the scale-up and manufacture of clinical and commercial grade antibodies should further support the significant progress we are achieving with our CD44 Cancer Stem Cell program," said Dr. David Young, chairman, president and CEO of ARIUS. "Avid will provide us with a supply of our CD44 targeting drug to initiate human clinical trials in 2008, subject to the clearance of our IND by the FDA."

ARIUS is advancing the formal preclinical toxicology program for its lead CD44 Cancer Stem Cell program, an anti-cancer antibody targeting a novel epitope of CD44 found in breast, colon and prostate cancers.