Amphion Innovations Invests Additional $1m in Leading Nutrigenomics Company, WellGen, Inc.
London, England, 30 August 2005 - Amphion Innovations plc, the developer of life sciences businesses, announces that it has invested a further $1 million in WellGen, Inc. taking Amphion’s stake to approximately 19% on a fully diluted basis.
WellGen is the first biotechnology company using nutrigenomics to discover and develop proprietary products that treat and prevent disease. WellGen uses its patented screening technology to screen naturally occurring compounds, that are generally regarded as safe, against a panel of genes associated with wellness and disease. The additional investment will support WellGen’s growth plans for its nutrigenomics product pipeline.
WellGen’s key research programmes include obesity, arthritis and other diseases associated with inflammation. WellGen has two bioactives in clinical trials – WG0401 and WG0301 – and six bioactives in pre-clinical development.
WellGen’s lead product is a safe, natural anti-inflammatory compound, WG0401, derived from black tea that is presently undergoing human clinical trials in the US. This product is targeted to address the gap caused by the removal from the market of prescription drug products such as Vioxx. WellGen has also developed pre-clinical compounds in the areas of exercise recovery and exercise performance.
David A. Evans, Chief Executive Officer of WellGen said:
“We have worked closely with Amphion over the past three years to build WellGen into the world’s leading nutrigenomics company.”
Richard Morgan, CEO of Amphion Innovations plc and a Board member of WellGen, said:
“WellGen enjoys a leadership position in the field of nutrigenomics and we believe there is a substantial opportunity to develop safe bioactives that can be used to treat chronic conditions, such as those formerly addressed by cox-2 inhibitors like Vioxx, which command multi-billion dollar markets. We are delighted to own a significant share of such an exciting business. With partners like Rutgers University and Danisco, and a strong portfolio of intellectual property, WellGen is well placed to succeed in the rapidly growing nutrigenomics market.”
WellGen is the first biotechnology company using nutrigenomics to discover and develop proprietary products that treat and prevent disease.
The WellGen discovery platform is based on nutrigenomics. Nutrigenomics focuses on the role of nutrients and dietary ingredients on gene expression in the human body. Some chemicals found in commonly consumed foods are dietary signals that influence gene and protein expression and, subsequently, metabolite production. Nutrigenomics seeks to examine and exploit the way nutrition influences human disease. It is possible to identify foods and food ingredients that alter expression of genes associated with onset or proliferation of various diseases and conditions. WellGen believes that alteration of expression of disease-causing genes will aid in the prevention or treatment of human diseases.
WellGen’s core intellectual property, licensed from Rutgers, was developed by Rutgers’ nationally recognized department of food science, in conjunction with the university’s department of chemistry and chemical biology and Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy of Rutgers, and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. The patented gene screening technology was the foundation upon which WellGen was started. Along with the screening technology, WellGen has exclusive access to bioactive compounds found to positively regulate expression of specific genes associated with disease. WellGen currently funds a significant portion of its research at Rutgers for discovery and pre-clinical validation of new bioactive compounds and technology. An important part of WellGen's scientific program is extensive safety and efficacy tests on its products, culminating in human clinical trials.
For further information please contact
+1 (732) 247 8750
Amphion Innovations plc
Josh Berkman, Media Relations
+1 (646) 747-7158
Ben Atwell / John Gilbert
+44 207 269 7169
WellGen, Inc. is a biotechnology company that is developing products for food, therapeutics, and dietary supplement markets. WellGen\'s technical platform is a method of screening the effect of food and related substances on the expression of genes associated with human health conditions. The company has developed proprietary substances that help reduce risk and severity for a variety of diseases.
On the web: www.wellgen.com
About Amphion Innovations plc
Amphion Innovations plc recently listed on the AIM Exchange in London under the symbol AMP.L. Amphion's business is the formation, financing, management, and development of life science and technology companies, working in partnership with corporations, governments, universities, and entrepreneurs seeking to commercialize their intellectual property.
On the web: www.amphionplc.com