PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 28, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Hemispherx Biopharma (NYSE MKT:HEB) announced today that the ASM Biodefense Meeting is scheduled for January 27-29, 2014 at the Washington Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, Washington DC. The University of Alabama and Hemispherx's poster presentation is entitled " Seasonal Influenza Vaccine and a TLR-3 Agonist, Rintatolimod (Ampligen®), Given Intranasally Produced Cross-Reactive IgA Antibodies Against Pathogenic H5N1 Influenza HA" and will be provided in poster format by Dr. E. Turner Overton, an infectious disease expert at UAB, in the afternoon of January 29, 2014. The presentation will be available on the Hemispherx website. Ampligen® (rintatolimod) is an experimental therapeutic.
Of special concern regarding avian influenza infections in humans is the impact of travel related to the Chinese New Year ( http://www.fao.org/news/story/en/item/212599/icode/) and the emergence of a novel drug resistant H7N9 avian influenza virus (Liu, et al, Expert Reviews 2014).
As officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report widespread flu activity this season in the U.S., Chinese health officials have announced rising cases of the deadly bird flu virus, H7N9, and two deaths (Canada and Vietnam) from another deadly avian influenza virus, H5N1, have already been reported this year. Thus, influenza epidemics continue to represent a significant medical problem around the world. Even with existing vaccines, annual influenza epidemics typically results in 20-50 million cases, resulting in 30,000-40,000 deaths in the U.S. alone. A possible pandemic of avian H5N1 or H7N9 could have even more devastating consequences.Representatives of Hemispherx Biopharma, Inc. and Prof. Overton, the principal researcher conducting the clinical trial at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, will describe the results to date of the Ampligen®/FluMist® intranasal influenza vaccine clinical trial and address questions during a media conference at the National Press Club in Washington, DC scheduled on Thursday, January 30 at 10 a.m. following the formal presentation at the ASM Biodefense Conference.