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TRACON Pharmaceuticals Announces Publication of Mechanism of Action of TRC105, a Novel Anti-Angiogenic Antibody

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SAN DIEGO, April 17, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- TRACON Pharmaceuticals, a biotechnology company that develops targeted therapies for oncology and ophthalmology, announced today that new data on the mechanism of action of TRC105 was presented at the 104th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) held from April 6-10, 2013, in Washington, DC.

In a poster presentation (Abstract #5079) entitled, "Endoglin Requirements for BMP9 Signaling in Endothelial Cells Reveals New Mechanism of Action for Selective Anti-Endoglin Antibodies," Dr. Nolan-Stevaux and colleagues demonstrate that endoglin is required for bone morphogenic protein 9 (BMP9) mediated signaling in human and mouse endothelial cells. Additionally, it was demonstrated that the anti-endoglin antibody TRC105 competitively inhibits BMP9 signaling, and inhibits HUVEC endothelial tube formation in vitro in response to angiogenic growth factors. Additional detail on the mechanism of action can be found in a paper published in PLoS ONE (Nolan-Stevaux O, Zhong W, Culp S, Shaffer K, Hoover J, et al. (2012) Endoglin Requirement for BMP9 Signaling in Endothelial Cells Reveals New Mechanism of Action for Selective Anti-Endoglin Antibodies. PLoS ONE 7(12): e50920. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0050920).

"This publication identifies a previously unreported mechanism of action of TRC105 and validates our hypothesis that TRC105 binds to the critical portion of endoglin required to interrupt angiogenesis," commented Charles Theuer, MD, President and CEO of TRACON. "We look forward to presenting clinical data for TRC105 in combination with Avastin® and with Xeloda® at the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting in Chicago in June."

About TRC105

TRC105 is a novel, first-in-class, clinical stage antibody to endoglin (CD105), an endothelial cell receptor that is essential for the process of new blood vessel formation called angiogenesis. TRC105 is currently being studied in multiple clinical trials in cancer patients, sponsored by both TRACON and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program (CTEP). For more information about the clinical trials, please visit TRACON's website at http://www.traconpharma.com/clinical_trials.php.

About TRACON

TRACON Pharmaceuticals develops targeted therapies for people with cancer and age-related macular degeneration. The current pipeline includes two clinical-stage product candidates, each addressing a unique cellular process, that are expected to complement currently available therapies. TRACON aims to develop effective and well-tolerated treatments for underserved populations with the ultimate goal of enhancing survival and quality of life. To learn more about the company and its products, visit TRACON's website at www.traconpharma.com.

CONTACT: Casey Logan Chief Business Officer (858) 550-0780 ext. 236 clogan@traconpharma.com

Source:TRACON Pharmaceuticals, Inc.