SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., March 10, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Talon Therapeutics, Inc. (OTCBB:TLON), today announced the issuance of U.S. patent 7,887,836 B2, which covers compositions and methods for treating lymphoma, leukemia and myeloma for Marqibo (vincristine sulfate liposome injection). The patent expires in March 2020. A previously issued patent covers Marqibo's use for treating relapsed acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).

"We believe Marqibo has the potential to be an effective treatment beyond our initial sought indication of adult Philadelphia chromosome negative (Ph-) acute lymphoblastic leukemia in second or greater relapse or that has progressed following two or more prior lines of anti-leukemia therapy," stated Steven R. Deitcher, M.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Talon Therapeutics. "We are pleased the newly issued patent broadens our potential disease coverage to include lymphoma, leukemia and myeloma for front line and relapsed treatment."

Pursuant to its license agreement with Tekmira and related sublicense with the University of British Columbia, Talon has exclusive rights to 14 issued U.S. patents (including the newly-issued patent), 78 issued foreign patents, 4 pending U.S. patent applications and 19 pending foreign applications, covering composition of matter, method of use and treatment, formulation and process. These patents and patent applications cover sphingomyelin and cholesterol liposome-based pharmaceutical compositions including Marqibo and two other compounds, formulation, dosage, process of making the liposome compositions, and methods of use of the compositions in the treatment cancer, relapsed cancer, and solid tumors.

About Marqibo(R) (vincristine sulfate liposome injection)

Marqibo is a novel, targeted Optisomeā„¢ encapsulated formulation product candidate of the FDA-approved anticancer drug vincristine. Talon is primarily developing Marqibo for the treatment of adult Ph- ALL. Vincristine, a microtubule inhibitor, is FDA-approved for ALL and is widely used as a single agent and in combination regimens for treatment for hematologic malignancies such as lymphomas and leukemias. Talon's encapsulation formulation is designed to provide prolonged circulation of the drug in the blood and accumulation at the tumor site. These characteristics are intended to increase the dose of vincristine delivered in a safe and effective manner. 

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