VANCOUVER, CANADA: Sirona Biochem Corp. (TSX-V: SBM), an emerging biotech company focused on drug development for diabetes and obesity, announced today another major appointment to its Scientific Advisory Board, Professor Bruce Verchere, one of Canada’s leading diabetes scientists.
Sirona Biochem CEO, Dr. Howard Verrico, said, “We consider ourselves very fortunate indeed to have attracted Professor Verchere to participate on Scientific Advisory Board. He is one of the leading researchers in the global battle against diabetes which has become a true epidemic that unfortunately is now affecting the young, a particular focus for him.
“Professor Verchere is very supportive of our drug development direction, SGLT inhibitors, and we will stand to benefit from his unique scientific perspective and advice.”
Professor Verchere is currently Head, Diabetes Research program, Child and Family Research Institute (‘CFRI’), at the University of British Columbia, and the Irving K. Barber Chair in Diabetes Research.
The Child & Family Research Institute researches a wide range of children’s and women’s health concerns and is the largest research institute of its kind in Western Canada.
“It is our intention to further strengthen our Scientific Advisory Board so that we can have access to similar high caliber scientists in diabetes and obesity research who will be able to provide Sirona Biochem’s team with additional input into our committed strategy with our unique SGLT inhibitors which are already showing positive test results,” concluded Dr. Verrico.
Sirona Biochem owns the worldwide product rights to a library of unique sodium glucose transporter (SGLT) inhibitors to treat diabetes and obesity. SGLT inhibitors help block the reuptake of excess sugars from urine, which can then reduce high blood sugar towards normal levels.
Dr. Verrico said management of sugar metabolism is a primary medical challenge associated with treating diabetes and obesity and that is why SGLT inhibitors show such promise in this regard.
Sirona Biochem has a strategic partnership with TFChem, a drug discovery company based in Rouen, France. TFChem licenses its technology of fluorinated carbohydrate mimics: GlycoMim®, and products in development, to biotech companies. This strategic partnership was completed by a detailed research and licence agreement signed one year ago.
Over 2 million Canadians and more than 23 million Americans have diabetes. The diabetes drug market reached US$18 billion in 2005, and is expected to increase to $21-25 billion by 2011.
Obesity has also become a major health problem for many post-industrial societies, so much so that in 2004, the United States Health and Human Services declared obesity to be a disease.
The World Health Organization (WHO) projects that globally, in 2005, 1.6 billion adults were overweight with at least 400 million adults obese. By 2015, approximately 2.3 billion adults will be overweight and 700 million will be obese. Obesity poses a major health risk because it greatly increases the risk of co-morbidities such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, arthritis, and cancer.
Sirona Biochem Corp. (TSX: V – SBM) is an emerging biotech company dedicated to the discovery and development of novel drug compounds. The current focus is on treatments for Type II diabetes and obesity. Sirona has entered into a license agreement with TFChem S.A.R.L., a drug discovery company based in Rouen, France. TFChem licenses its technology of fluorinated carbohydrate mimics: GlycoMim®, and products in development, to biotech companies. The license agreement with TFChem provides for research and development of new compounds known as SGLT Inhibitors. www.sironabiochem.com
John Dougherty, Corporate Development at 604-641-4466.
Nigel Horsley, Media Relations 604-689-8833.
President and Director
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.