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Bioniche & University of Ottawa Sign Exclusive Global License Agreement for Natural Health Technology
- potential animal and human health applications for reduction of anxiety -
BELLEVILLE, ON & OTTAWA, ON, August 25, 2010 – Bioniche Life Sciences Inc. (TSX: BNC), a research-based, technology-driven Canadian biopharmaceutical company, together with the University of Ottawa, one of Canada’s top ten research universities, today announced the signing of an exclusive global license agreement. The agreement provides commercial access for Bioniche to University of Ottawa’s technology for botanical therapeutics (natural health) and pharmaceutical compounds for treating anxiety and related conditions in animal health, human health and aquaculture.
University of Ottawa researchers and collaborators at the Universidad Nacional in Costa Rica have been studying these botanicals and compounds extensively for nearly 15 years. The research team combined expertise in botany, biology, medicinal chemistry and neuroscience to develop this unique family of botanicals and compounds from natural sources. They demonstrated the strong anti-anxiety effects through studies in numerous animal models. Preliminary safety and efficacy data have proven promising and show none of the side effects seen with other anti-anxiety medications.
The Company plans to initially explore developing the technology into animal health products for dogs and horses, where it could help reduce anxiety without the side effects of chemical calming agents. In the future, the Company may also explore the development of human applications for the technology. The licensing agreement includes a commitment to ongoing research at the University of Ottawa.
“There is an unmet need in both animal and human health for calming agents that are non-addictive,” said Graeme McRae, Chairman, President & CEO of Bioniche Life Sciences Inc. “We are encouraged by the extensive work done by Dr. Arnason and his team at the University of Ottawa, upon which the Research & Development team at Bioniche will add additional data from further clinical studies, with a goal to registering and launching an animal health product in the next few years.”
“Technology partnerships with companies, such as this collaboration with Bioniche, are essential to ensure that academic research discoveries with potential societal benefits and commercial opportunity are brought to market,” said Dr. Mona Nemer, Vice-President, Research, at the University of Ottawa. “We look forward to working with Bioniche on this partnership as the technology is commercialized.”
Research team member Dr. John T. Arnason, Professor of Biology in the Faculty of Science at the University of Ottawa added, “We are pleased to see our many years of research to demonstrate the value of tropical diversity come to fruition with the signing of a license agreement with Bioniche, and we look forward to collaborating with the Company to develop products for the marketplace.”
About the Technology
The technology has basis in traditional medicine, and the researchers at University of Ottawa and their Central American colleagues have discovered a family of new compounds applying the advanced tools of chemistry, biology and neuroscience to demonstrate and optimize the real effects of natural compounds on human and animal health. In support of the International Biodiversity Convention and the desire to honour the traditional knowledge of the indigenous communities, every effort will be made to see benefits flow back to these communities in Central America. Bioniche is sponsoring a propagation program in collaboration with local producers to enable the source material to be cultivated commercially with no impact on the delicate ecosystem of the rainforests, where the plant grows.
About Bioniche Life Sciences Inc.
Bioniche Life Sciences Inc. is a research-based, technology-driven Canadian biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development, manufacturing, and marketing of proprietary products for human and animal health markets worldwide. The fully-integrated company employs approximately 200 skilled personnel and has three operating divisions: Human Health, Animal Health, and Food Safety. The Company develops proprietary cancer therapies supported by revenues from marketed products in human and animal health. For more information, please visit www.Bioniche.com.
About the University of Ottawa
The University of Ottawa is committed to research excellence and encourages an interdisciplinary approach to knowledge creation, which attracts the best academic talent from across Canada and around the world. With 38,000 students and over $250 million annually in research funding, the University of Ottawa is one of Canada’s top ten research universities.
Except for historical information, this news release may contain forward-looking statements that reflect the Company’s current expectation regarding future events. These forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainties, which may cause, but are not limited to, changing market conditions, the successful and timely completion of clinical studies, the establishment of corporate alliances, the impact of competitive products and pricing, new product development, uncertainties related to the regulatory approval process, and other risks detailed from time to time in the Company’s ongoing quarterly and annual reporting.
For further information, please contact:
Jennifer Shea, Vice-President, Communications, Investor & Government Relations
Bioniche Life Sciences Inc.
Telephone: (613) 966-8058
Cell: (613) 391-2097
Nathalie Vanasse, Acting Director, Research Communications
Office of the Vice-President (Research), University of Ottawa
Telephone: (613) 562-5800 Extension 2797