OPKO Health Announces Publication of Study Detecting Antibodies in NMO
Patients Using OPKO Screening Technology
MIAMI -- April 05, 2013
OPKO Health, Inc. (NYSE: OPK) today announced the publication of a study
applying its novel library screening technology to identify a synthetic
peptoid that binds to anti-Aquaporin 4 (AQP4) antibodies in the serum of
patients with Neuromyelitis optica (NMO). The study, published in the March
21, 2013 issue of the journal, Chemistry and Biology, reports on the ability
to distinguish between NMO patient serum and serum from healthy controls or
patients with multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s Disease, narcolepsy, and lupus
with high accuracy using the Company’s powerful and general method for the
identification in small blood samples of disease-specific antibodies that can
serve as diagnostic biomarkers for various diseases. The technology has
previously been validated using a mouse model for multiple sclerosis and also
identified candidate biomarkers for human Alzheimer’s Disease that are
currently undergoing more extensive testing. NMO is an autoimmune inflammatory
disorder of the central nervous system. In most NMO patients, autoantibodies
to the water channel protein AQP4 represent at high levels and are thought to
drive pathology by mediating complement-dependent destruction of astrocytes.
NMO is often diagnosed as multiple sclerosis with potentially serious adverse
consequences as the optimal treatment for each differs substantially.
About OPKO Health, Inc.
OPKO is a multinational biopharmaceutical and diagnostics company that seeks
to establish industry leading positions in large, rapidly growing markets by
leveraging its discovery, development and commercialization expertise and
novel and proprietary technologies.
This press release contains "forward-looking statements," as that term is
defined under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (PSLRA),
which statements may be identified by words such as "expects," "plans,"
"projects," "will," "may," "anticipates," "believes," "should," "could,"
"intends," "estimates," and other words of similar meaning, including
statements regarding our product development efforts, including our ability to
develop and commercialize a diagnostic blood test for NMO, Alzheimer's
disease, multiple sclerosis, and other important diseases, our ability to
develop tests to identify biomarkers for NMO and other diseases, as well as
other non-historical statements about our expectations, beliefs or intentions
regarding our business, technologies and products, financial condition,
strategies or prospects. Many factors, including those described in our
filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, could cause our actual
activities or results to differ materially from the activities and results
anticipated in forward-looking statements. These factors include that initial
testing may not be indicative of future success and we will be unable to
successfully develop or commercialize a diagnostic test for NMO, Alzheimer's
disease, multiple sclerosis, and other diseases, that the diagnostic test may
fail and not be successful in identifying biomarkers or antibodies unique to
NMO, Alzheimer's Disease, multiple sclerosis, or other diseases or achieve the
expected results or effectiveness, and may not generate data that would
support the approval or marketing of this or other diagnostic products, that
others may develop products, including other early stage diagnostic products
which are superior to the tests we are developing, and that the diagnostic
tests if developed may not have advantages over other marketed products. In
addition, forward-looking statements may also be adversely affected by risks
inherent in funding, developing and obtaining regulatory approvals of new,
commercially-viable and competitive products and treatments, general market
factors, competitive product development, product availability, federal and
state regulations and legislation, the regulatory process for new products and
indications, manufacturing issues that may arise, patent positions and
litigation, among other factors. The forward-looking statements contained in
this press release speak only as of the date the statements were made, and we
do not undertake any obligation to update forward-looking statements. We
intend that all forward-looking statements be subject to the safe-harbor
provisions of the PSLRA.
OPKO Health, Inc.
Steven D. Rubin, 305-575-6015
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