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Biotech Firm Finishing Work on Anthrax Treatment

Biotech Firm Finishing Work on Anthrax Treatment
Global Security Newswire

A New Jersey biotechnology company could begin selling a new anthrax treatment to U.S. agencies before the end of 2007, the Associated Press reported yesterday (see GSN, Dec. 21, 2006).

Elusys Therapeutics Inc. has received almost $20 million over a period of years from the Defense Department and National Institutes of Health, according to company president and chief executive officer Elizabeth Posillico. It has used the funding to develop Anthim, a treatment for anthrax infection that binds antibodies to toxins, which are then consumed and eliminated from the body.

More than half of test rabbits and monkeys have survived after being exposed to anthrax and then treated within two days with Anthim, AP reported. The compound has also proven safe in testing on healthy humans.

Further animal testing is needed before the drug can be marketed, Posillico said (Linda Johnson, Associated Press/NorthJersey.com, Jan. 4).