NEW YORK, Nov. 7, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- SIGA Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq:SIGA), a company specializing in the development of pharmaceutical agents to combat bio-warfare pathogens, announced today that it plans to appeal to the Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Hearings and Appeals the conclusion of SBA's Area Director following a size protest that SIGA was "other than small." On October 8, 2010, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) had announced its intention to award SIGA a contract with HHS to deliver 1.7 million courses of its smallpox antiviral for the Strategic National Stockpile, subject to the protest. HHS's announcement, and the protest, related to a Request for Proposal issued by HHS's Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (RFP-BARDA-09-35). The Small Business Administration ruling results from a small business size protest filed by Chimerix, Inc. (Chimerix) after it had received pre-award notice from HHS that it was an unsuccessful bidder. HHS designated the proposed contract as a small business set-aside at the time of the original solicitation in March 2009. This ruling, if upheld on appeal, would render SIGA ineligible for the set-aside. "We are disappointed with the Small Business Administration's finding, rendered November 5, 2010, and believe that SIGA appropriately qualified as a small business concern for this procurement. We are very proud that HHS selected our groundbreaking drug, ST 246 ®, for this important acquisition. We look forward to resolving the appeal favorably and promptly," said Dr. Eric A. Rose, SIGA's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Dr. Rose added, "Development of ST-246 will continue, supported by our robust advanced development BARDA contracts, which fully fund expeditious development through completion of the FDA approval process for therapeutic and post-exposure use of the oral formulation, and therapeutic use of the IV formulation. The United States continues to need a smallpox antiviral to address the material threat that smallpox bioterrorism presents to our national security, and we believe that our drug is the solution for this challenge. A successful appeal is only one of multiple means by which the federal government could procure ST-246."