Diatos and the Université Catholique de Louvain announce major technology and research collaboration deal

Paris, France, and Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium, May, 2001-

Diatos S.A., leader in the development of intracellular/intranuclear peptide-based drug delivery for cancer and infectious diseases, and the Université Catholique de Louvain (UCL), announced today a three years agreement covering a major research and development collaboration on tumor activated prodrugs and drug delivery systems combining Diatos and UCL’s proprietary technologies.

The Company will work in close collaboration with Professor André Trouet, a pioneer and leading figure in the field of Tumor Activated Prodrugs (TAP), and his team of the UCL’s Cell Biology Laboratory. Under the terms of the agreement, joint discoveries will be owned by both parties, and Diatos acquires the right for an exclusive worldwide license from UCL on this technology in the field of oncology.

"This agreement builds on the significant amount of intellectual property we have now accumulated at Diatos," said John Tchelingerian, President & CEO of Diatos. "UCL is an international recognized centre of expertise in life siences and applied biomedical research. This collaboration builds on the world class work carried out by Pr Trouet and his team at UCL which demonstrated the feasibility of using TAP technologies as a robust and very promising anti-cancer approach."

Gilles Capart, the CEO of Sopartec, the investment and technology transfer company of UCL, commented: "This is a good example of a very promising strategic alliance between university and industry which will accelerate the successful development of the company while funding front-end basic research with wide applications".

About Diatos Diatos is a product focused company specialized in the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases. The Company’s mission is to develop, partner and commercialize proprietary intracellular / intranuclear drug delivery systems based on the use of cell translocating antibodies and peptides. Diatos has a robust patent portfolio covering its core technology and applications. A spin off from the Institut Pasteur (Paris, France), Diatos was founded early 1999 by renown scientists including Pr. Stratis Avrameas, the inventor of the ELISA technology, and the French venture capital firm Sofinnova Partners.

Diatos proprietary fully human peptide-based vectors can penetrate into living cells and transport large quantities of low and high molecular weight molecules. The vectors are efficient in selectively delivering small molecules, nucleic acids, proteins (including antibodies) and microspheres into the cell cytoplasm and nucleus. The Company is backed by major European and US venture capital funds: Sofinnova Partners (France), GIMV (Belgium), InterWest Partners (USA), Société Générale Asset Management (France), AGF Private Equity (France) and Sopartec (Belgium).

Diatos S.A., 166 Boulevard du Montparnasse, 75014 Paris, France

Contact info: Dr John Tchelingerian, phone +33-6-62 35 01 78, e-mail: jtcheli@attglobal.net

About UCL UCL is one of the largest universities in Belgium, with 20,000 students. The 10 schools and 50 departments cover most disciplines of science, medicine and human sciences and are based in the campuses of Louvain-la-Neuve and Woluwé (Brussels). Research is conducted in 200 units by a staff of 2000 academic and scientific people. UCL has created recently, on its campus of Louvain-la-Neuve, a new Institute of Life Science (ILS) to group and further develop its research activities in molecular and cellular biology. These encompass a wide spectrum of basic research in the microbiological, vegetal and animal fields, which have therapeutic applications in different pathologies such as atherosclerosis, diabetes and cancer. The background technologies include cell culture, in vitro models, cell pharmacology and pharmacokinetics. http://www.ucl.ac.be/

About Sopartec SOPARTEC SA is the technology transfer and investment affiliated with the University of Louvain (UCL). Active since 10 years in providing seed capital to new companies based on the technologies discovered at the university, its charter has been extended in 1999 to include the management of the intellectual property of UCL, including patents, licenses and collaborative research implying technology transfer. The main objective is to promote and support the research function of the university. Its financial resources originate from capital gains made on its investments. Contact info: Gilles Capart, phone +32-10-47 90 54, e-mail: g.capart@auxin.be