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PharmAthene Secures Exclusive License To PER.C6® Cell Line For Commercial Production Of Recombinant Bioscavenger

ANNAPOLIS, Md., Jan. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- PharmAthene, Inc. (NYSE MKT: PIP), a biodefense company developing medical countermeasures against biological and chemical threats, announced today that it has entered into an exclusive commercial license for the use of Percivia's proprietary PER.C6 ® technology platform in the production of PharmAthene's next generation recombinant butyrylcholinesterase (rBChE) bioscavenger.  

The PER.C6 ® platform is a human, cell-based manufacturing system that enables the production of high quality, cost effective biological products for the life sciences industry with the added benefit of being fully human, unlike products manufactured using other expression systems.  

"The PER.C6 ® platform offers many advantages over our initial transgenic approach, which successfully completed a Phase I clinical study.  These include, the opportunity for higher production yields with substantially reduced production costs and the capability for rapid scale up in the event of a chemical weapons attack," commented Eric I. Richman, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Also, since it is based on a recombinant human cell line, the PER.C6 ® platform should enable a final product with a pharmacokinetic profile that more closely matches the naturally occurring butyrylcholinesterase found in human plasma."

"PharmAthene is proud to be working in collaboration with the Department of Defense (DoD) to develop innovative new medical countermeasure solutions to address significant national security threats.  The potential use of chemical weapons represents a growing concern.  If successful, our rBChE bioscavenger platform could provide an efficient and flexible manufacturing approach and a more cost-effective solution for the U.S. government to protect the U.S. military and citizens from chemical weapons," said Dr. John Troyer, Vice President, Chemical Defense Product Development.  "We have made significant advances under our current contract with the DoD and expect to begin pharmacokinetic and efficacy testing of rBChE in animals in the coming months."

A recombinant form of human butyrylcholinesterase, a naturally occurring protein found in minute quantities in blood.  BChE functions as a natural bioscavenger, to absorb toxins such as organophosphorous compounds (nerve agents) and certain pesticides, before they cause irreversible neurological damage.

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