SILVER SPRING, Md., Aug. 16, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Nuvilex, Inc. (OTCQB: NVLX), an international biotechnology provider of cell and gene therapy solutions, announced today it has contacted several key members of congress, lending its support to the Pancreatic Cancer Research and Education Act (S. 362/H.R. 733).
The legislation being proposed in H.R. 733, calls for an appropriation of $20 Million and requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services "to establish and implement a pancreatic cancer initiative to assist in coordinating activities to address the high mortality rate associated with pancreatic cancer" through establishing an Interdisciplinary Pancreatic Cancer Coordinating Committee and developing a long-term plan with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Research dedicated to providing possible treatments for pancreatic cancer receives only ~2% of the federal funding from NCI. Finally, there is no national plan designed to improve patient survival, which this bill is designed to initiate.
Since its original introduction in 2009 by Congresswoman Anna Eshoo (D,CA) and reintroduction with Leonard Lance (R,NJ) in 2011 followed by introduction of S. 362 by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D,RI) to the Senate, the bill has now received 276 cosponsoring members from the House and 58 from the Senate. In addressing the critical need for this legislation in his letters to Congress, Nuvilex's Chief Executive Dr. Robert Ryan, stressed the importance of funding in order to help bring new pancreatic cancer therapies forward to completion, stating, "…the opportunities for bringing treatments such as Nuvilex's for [pancreatic cancer] to fruition are, and will continue to be, limited by the availability of funding." Dr. Ryan added, "Government funding must be made available to small companies who, like Nuvilex, have demonstrated through preclinical and/or early clinical trials the efficacy of their product in treating high-mortality diseases such as pancreatic cancer." One of the bill's sponsors, Senator Isakson (R,GA), emphasized his deep commitment to this bill stating, "…this bill will go a long way in ensuring that the fight against pancreatic cancer receives its fair share of research and resources."In providing endorsement of this legislation by Nuvilex, its Board and on behalf of its new wholly-owned subsidiary Austrianova Singapore, Dr. Ryan finished by pointing out, "Nuvilex feels it is critical to endorse S. 362/H.R. 733. It's very important that our Congressional leaders receive the recommendations and support from all constituents, including Nuvilex, in order to help support and stimulate passage of the Pancreatic Cancer Research and Education Act. We believe the completed Phase 1/2 pancreatic cancer trial using our Cell-in-a-Box® patented technology will provide an important step toward helping change the poor pancreatic cancer survivor statistics. Nuvilex sees this Congressional Initiative as another potentially critical mechanism to help move our technology forward."