GenPharm International Inc. announced Tuesday that it hasbeen awarded two Phase II small business innovation research(SBIR) grants to support its ongoing research for developingtransgenic animals that produce human antibody molecules.

This is the third Phase II grant that privately held GenPharmhas received in the past year from the National Institutes ofHealth (NIH) to support its research on transgenic humanmonoclonal production, bringing the total to more than $1million, said David Winter, president and chief operating officerof GenPharm U.S. of Mountain View, Calif.

One of the two Phase II grants, under the direction of DennisHuszar, will support the development of novel immunodeficientmice using GenPharm's gene targeting technology. Theresearchers plan to use such mice to develop fully humanmonoclonal antibody molecules.

Funds from the second grant will be directed by researcher TedChoi in an effort to develop specific transgenic mice thatexpress human immunoglobulin genes. The scientists willproduce these particular mice using GenPharm's technology forintroducing yeast artificial chromosomes into the murinegermline.

GenPharm intends to use its transgenic animal technology toproduce therapeutic human monoclonals to be used for treatingimmune and cardiovascular diseases, inflammation, allergiesand cancer.

-- Jennifer Van Brunt Senior Editor

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