Proteome Systems signs agreement with Prince Henry's Institute for Ovarian Cancer Diagnostic Test

October 12, 2005

Sydney, Australia: Proteome Systems (ASX:PXL) today announced a collaboration with Prince Henry's Institute Medical Research (PHIMR) to combine their IP and expertise in ovarian cancer for the discovery and development of novel diagnostic markers. Of all the gynaecologic cancers, ovarian malignancies represent the greatest clinical challenge. Around 1 in 56 women will develop ovarian cancer during their lifetime. Due to the absence of clear symptoms, ovarian cancer is usually detected when it has already spread beyond the ovary. At this relatively late stage the 5 year survival rate has decreased to ~30% while if the cancer is detected when confined to the ovary, the corresponding 5-year survival rate is >85%. This has led to the need to develop markers that can detect ovarian cancer at this early stage.

Proteome Systems has discovered and patented novel markers for epithelial ovarian cancer using its proprietary proteomic and glycoproteomic technology platforms. The company is actively seeking partnerships with academic and clinical groups with expertise in ovarian cancer to further expand its portfolio of ovarian cancer markers and clinically evaluate these for the development of a diagnostic test.

Associate Professor David Robertson leads the team at PHIMR that has previously developed a test to diagnose ovarian cancer (Robertson et al., 2002; Robertson and Oehler, 2005). The test is useful for initial diagnosis and monitoring recurrence of the disease in post-menopausal women, but it does not have the required specificity and sensitivity for application to diagnosis of early stage disease. Consequently, there is a need to identify new diagnostic markers for the development of a highly sensitive test for early stage ovarian cancer. PHIMR bring complementary technology in proteomics and reproductive biology, as well as clinical expertise in ovarian cancer, for the discovery and evaluation of new diagnostic markers.

Dr Jenny Harry, Deputy CEO and Head of Diagnostics at Proteome Systems said she "is delighted to be working with an outstanding team of scientists at PHIMR who also have strong commercial focus. The identification of diagnostic markers for the early stages of ovarian cancer will provide the basis for the development of a screening test and lead to a better prognosis for women with this disease. Women would be able to regularly screen for ovarian cancer as is currently possible for breast and cervical cancers."
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Full details of the publication:
ROBERTSON, D.M., STEPHENSON, T., PRUYSERS, E., MCCLOUD, P., TSIGOS, A., GROOME, N., MAMERS, P. and H.G. BURGER, H.G.(2002) Characterisation of inhibin forms and their measurement by an inhibin alpha subunit ELISA in serum from postmenopausal women with ovarian cancer. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 87:816-824.

ROBERTSON DM, OEHLER M (2005) Emerging role of inhibin as a biomarker for ovarian cancer. Women's Health 1, 51-57.

Background on Proteome Systems:
Proteome Systems Discovery & Diagnostics business discovers protein biomarkers that have potential for use as diagnostics and therapeutic targets in the areas of respiratory disease, neurobiology & aging and cancer. With the recent acquisition of Eukarion Inc., the Discovery & Diagnostics business has a portfolio of drugs entering clinical development. Proteome Systems Technology business develops and commercialises innovative technology solutions to enable proteomics and glycomics research. These solutions include integrated instrument-based systems, consumables and bioinformatic software. Additional information about Proteome Systems can be found at http://www.proteomesystems.com

For further information contact: Jenny Harry
Deputy CEO,
Head of Diagnostics & Discovery
Proteome Systems Limited
Phone: 02 8877 8947

Background on Prince Henry's Hen Institute:
For over forty years, Prince Henry's Institute has maintained a reputation for excellence in the field of endocrinology, the study of hormones. The Institute's vision is to improve health through hormone research. An independent review in 2003 concluded that Prince Henry's Institute is one of the top ranking research Institutes in reproductive health in the world. The Institute has a World Health Organization accreditation as a Collaborating Centre for Research in Human Reproduction - one of only two in Australia. State of the art technology in Proteomics, laser dissection and micro-array analysis allows PHI scientists to lead the world in reproductive and hormone research. PHIMR's joint discovery of the hormone inhibin has opened up new research opportunities into the development of diagnostic tests for ovarian cancers and diseases such as Down's syndrome. A close interface between laboratory based research and clinical research is of major advantage to the Institute

Key research strengths include; obesity, heart disease, diabetes, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, male and female infertility, human genetics and sex determination, and new contraceptive methods. Beginning as the Medical Research Centre for Prince Henry's Hospital (1969-1990), PHIMR is now an independent Institute based at Monash Medical Centre in Clayton, Melbourne.

For more information contact Rebecca Scott 03 9594 4391 or mobile 0417 164 791

Research Australia

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