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Could ViRexx’s ‘Linked Recognition’ Research Lead to a Cancer Vaccine?


SARASOTA, Fla., May 30, 2006 (WebWire) —

It’s a story about a leading Canadian scientist who played a pivotal role in developing GlaxoSmithKline’s (NYSE: GSK) lamivudine for the treatment of hepatitis B virus. He realized his twenty-year journey was incomplete, and he has begun pursuing what he hopes might become a breakthrough vaccine, not only for those infected with the HBV virus but also for cancer patients. ViRexx Medical (AMEX: REX; TSX: VIR.TO) Chief Executive Lorne Tyrrell, told, “I was disappointed the sustained viral response was not complete.” Medical journals have reported the emergence of HBV strains, which are resistant to lamivudine in long-term therapy.

Dr. Tyrrell started down the road to developing a new therapy after he observed differences in some HBV-infected patients, “We noticed patients, who have an immune response to the virus and take lamivudine, will have a better sustained response rate.” Tyrrell observed some patients’ immune systems tolerated the HBV virus, while other patients did not. Because of tolerance, a therapy’s efficacy may be compromised.

Tyrrell told, the main question he sought to answer in order to develop a breakthrough was this: “Was there some way to break tolerance to hepatitis B by stimulating the immune response?” This began the research, which resulted in the Chimigen™ platform, recently authorized for human clinical testing in Canada. Laboratory testing demonstrated that ‘linked recognition’ may be the key to breaking tolerance in HBV-infected patients. Linked recognition may help stimulate both a T cell and B cell response. Most therapeutic vaccines only stimulate the B lymphocytes.

If the trials prove as successful as laboratory testing has shown, Tyrrell may expand the platform’s theoretical ‘flexibility’ to help solve other medical riddles. “Our plan is to go with one or two antigens first and see that we get the appropriate immune response. If we do, then we will be looking at other antigens, not only from viruses, but we can be looking at cancer antigens in this platform.”

About is an internet financial news website providing insightful and thought-provoking features about some of the world’s latest developing trends. Please visit to read James Finch’s entire interview with Dr. Lorne Tyrrell, entitled, “A Scientist’s 20-year Unfinished Journey to Treat HBV May Open the Door to a New Class of Flexible Vaccines.”



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