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Biocon and HCG group of hospitals ltd. Join hands to fight against cervical cancer

Bangalore December 10, 2009

Biocon and HCG group of hospitals today announced their partnership to conduct a study to evaluate the potential benefits of BIOMAb EGFR® in cervical cancer patients.This unique molecule would take healthcare for cervical cancer patients to a new threshold. BIOMAb EGFR® is Biocon’s humanized monoclonal antibody which is approved for the treatment of head and neck cancers in India.

The study will be conducted for six years in various centers of HCG across the country, involving many eminent oncologists and will be in compliance to ICH-GCP guidelines. The participating centers are Bangalore, Mysore, Vijayavada, Ranchi, Cuttack and Nashik.

“This partnership is in light of the unmet need for an effective treatment option for the large number of cervical cancer patients in our country. I see this collaborative model of Biocon’s unique humanized MAb and HCG’s state of the art facilities as a big step towards developing India as a global destination for translational research and cutting edge clinical trials.” said Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, MD, Biocon Ltd.

Ajai Kumar, Chairman and CEO of HCG group of hospitals said, “This HCG-led study will be conducted in a well controlled manner specifically keeping in mind the needs of the Indian patients which vary considerably from those of the West. Most treatment for this disease is currently based on data obtained from the western world. We chose BIOMAb EGFR® taking into account the safety profile this molecule has displayed in addition to results obtained in the other studies with this drug”.

Cervical cancer is the most common cancer among women in India and is the primary cause of cancer-related deaths in developing countries. To an estimated annual global incidence of 500,000 cervical cancers, India contributes 100,000, i.e. 1/5 of the world burden. Cervical cancer is responsible for more than 280,000 deaths annually worldwide. In India the number of deaths due to cervical cancer is estimated to rise to 79,000 by the year 2010. The cancer mostly affects middle-aged women (between 40 and 55 years), especially those from the lower economic status. Chemo radiotherapy has been shown in several studies to be more effective in terms of overall survival and local control, than radiation therapy alone in the treatment of women with locally advanced carcinoma of the cervix. But still the 2 year progression free survival is around 67% and there is a need for further improvement.

BIOMAb EGFR® is being studied globally in various indications like Glioma, NSCLC, Pancreatic cancer, Gastric cancer, Cervical cancer etc. in addition to head and neck cancers. It is a boost to our division that a study headed by eminent oncologists, involving Indian patients is being initiated with this molecule. The results will clearly be of huge relevance to the Indian subcontinent where cervical cancer is a true unmet need. Studies with BIOMAb EGFR® in NSCLC and Glioma are currently ongoing in India.

About Biocon Limited
Established in 1978, Biocon Limited is one of India's premier biotechnology companies. Together with its group companies, Biocon forms a fully integrated biotechnology enterprise, specializing in biopharmaceuticals, custom research and clinical research which deliver products and solutions to partners and customers across the globe. Biocon launched the world's first recombinant human insulin, INSUGENâ in November 2004 using Pichia expression and India's first indigenously produced monoclonal antibody BIOMAb-EGFRTM.

A leading US trade publication, Med Ad News, in its 2007/08 listings has ranked Biocon 20th amongst the leading biotechnology companies in the world and the 7th largest Biotech employer in the world. Biocon recently received the 2009 BioSingapore Asia Pacific Biotechnology Award for Best Listed Company.

Focusing on unmet medical needs in cancer, diabetes and inflammatory diseases, Biocon offers novel therapies on a platform of affordable innovation. Biocon’s strategic licensing partnerships provide market penetration and global access to deliver breakthrough therapeutics to millions of patients the world over.

About HCG
Established in 1989, HCG is now South Asia’s largest cancer care network of 17 centers. It has gained repute for employing the latest and best technology to treat cancer patients. Some of the Hospitals of HCG are Bangalore Institute of Oncology, Bangalore,Bangalore Institute of Oncology Specialty Centre, Bangalore,Malnad Hospital & Institute Of Oncology, Shimoga, Karnataka,Bharat Hospital & Institute Of Oncology, Mysore,Gokula Curie Centre Of Oncology, Bangalore,M.S. Ramaiah Memorial & Hospital,Curie Centre of Oncology, Bangalore,Panda Curie Cancer Hospital, Cuttack, Orissa,Curie Manavata Cancer Centre, Nashik, Maharashtra andCurie-Abdur Razzaque Ansari Cancer Institute, Ranchi, Jharkhand




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