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New Data Published on Clever-1 Function

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Wednesday, September 12, 2018

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TURKU - Finland - Faron Pharmaceuticals Ltd ("Faron") (AIM: FARN), the clinical stage biopharmaceutical company, announces new data on Clever-1 function in the control of antibody production by B-lymphocytes (B cells).

Clever-1, a cell surface receptor expressed mainly by endothelial cells and monocytes/macrophages, has previously been shown to control cell-mediated immunity (Palani et al. 2016). The recent work by Dunkel and colleagues, published online by Frontiers in Immunology, shows for the first time that Clever-1 also participates in the control of B cell response and humoral antibody production. The data suggest that Clever-1 serves as an endogenous immunosuppressive molecule in monocytes/macrophages, where it maintains the production of inflammatory cytokines at physiological levels. When Clever-1 is removed from monocytes/macrophages, one consequence of the unrestrained production of inflammatory cytokines is the increased antibody production by B cells.

Deleting or neutralizing Clever-1 has previously been reported to augment antitumor immune responses in melanoma, lymphoma and breast cancer. The efficacy of anti-Clever-1 antibodies in these experimental models supports Faron's development of Clevegen, its fully human anti-Clever-1 antibody, under investigation as a potential cancer immunotherapy and due to enter the clinic later this year.

The observations by Dunkel et al suggest that disrupting the function of Clever-1 should not lead to the suppression of antibody production but, rather, could improve humoral immune responses against tumor antigens and during vaccinations.

Commenting on this finding, Dr Markku Jalkanen, CEO of Faron, said: "This is a fascinating finding and builds up further evidence for the importance to control Clever-1 function in conditions where active immune suppression can cause disease or worsen disease development. It provides further scientific rationale for our Vaccination Response Enhancement Technology (VRET) programme, which is currently under early investigation with Clevegen."

Referred article: Dunkel J, Viitala M, Karikoski M, Rantakari P, Virtakoivu R, Hollmén M, Jalkanen S and Salmi M. Macrophage Clever-1 regulates antibody production. Frontiers in Immunolgy. On line code Front. Immunol. | doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2018.02257

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fimmu.2018.02257/abstract

About Faron Pharmaceuticals Ltd
Faron (AIM:FARN) is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company developing novel treatments for medical conditions with significant unmet needs. The Company currently has a pipeline focusing on acute organ traumas, vascular damage and cancer immunotherapy. The Company's lead candidate Traumakine, to prevent vascular leakage and organ failures, has completed a Phase III clinical trial in Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). An additional European Phase II Traumakine trial is underway for the Rupture of Abdominal Aorta Aneurysm ("RAAA"). Faron's second candidate Clevegen is a ground breaking pre-clinical anti-Clever-1 antibody. Clevegen has the ability to switch immune suppression to immune activation in various conditions, with potential across oncology, infectious disease and vaccine development. This novel macrophage-directed immuno-oncology switch called Tumour Immunity Enabling Technology ("TIET") may be used alone or in combination with other immune checkpoint molecules for the treatment of cancer patients. Faron is based in Turku, Finland. Further information is available at www.faron.com

Contacts:
Faron Pharmaceuticals Ltd
Dr Markku Jalkanen, Chief Executive Officer
investor.relations@faron.com

Consilium Strategic Communications
Mary-Jane Elliott, David Daley, Matthew Neal, Lindsey Neville
Phone: +44 (0)20 3709 5700
E-mail: faron@consilium-comms.com

Westwicke Partners, IR (US)Chris Brinzey
Phone: 01 339 970 2843
E-Mail: chris.brinzey@westwicke.com

Source: Faron Pharmaceuticals Ltd.
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