New Research Could Lead to Potential Treatment for Avian Flu


SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- With the re-emergence of SARS

and another outbreak of Avian Flu in Asia, many government officials are

concerned the outbreaks will increase and a new epidemic will emerge. In

response to this threat, ImmuneRegen BioSciences, a wholly owned subsidiary of

IR Biosciences Holdings, Inc., recently completed

testing on the Hong Kong influenza virus, which is similar to that of SARS and

the Avian Flu. Company executives believe this research may indicate efficacy

of their proprietary compound, Homspera, in treating the Hong Kong respiratory

virus in mice. Additionally, company executives believe these test results

are vital to research designed to develop a treatment for SARS.

The study, conducted at the University of Arizona Lung Injury Laboratory

by Mark Witten, PhD, co-founder and acting head researcher of ImmuneRegen,

was performed on 31 mice. The results show that, of those mice treated

with Homspera, more than 90 percent survived the lung injury. The mice not treated with

Homspera had pathological signs of lung injury and showed actual Hong Kong

influenza virons in the lung tissue. Homspera-treated mice had normal airways

and no detectable Hong Kong influenza virons, which is an encouraging

development given fears that the Avian flu reported in Vietnam had crossed

with human flu genomes to produce a new strain of the virus -- a strain to

which humans may have no immune system recognition.

Witten has more than 20 years of experience in the research field and

over 200 peer-reviewed scientific publications. He spent two years as an

instructor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, where he conducted

additional research in Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS)/Acute Lung

Injury (ALI). In 1990, he became research assistant professor in the

Department of Pediatrics at the University of Arizona College of Medicine,

where he started his JP-8 inhalation toxicology research for the U.S. Air

Force Office of Scientific Research.

ImmuneRegen BioSciences, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of IR BioSciences

Holdings, Inc., is a biotechnology company engaged

in the research and development of applications utilizing modified

Substance P, a naturally occurring immunomodulator.

Source: ImmuneRegen BioSciences, Inc.

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