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Jan 9, 2007

Pfizer and Mirus Bio to Optimize Gene-silencing in Animal Models

  • Mirus Bio entered into a two-year, multimillion dollar agreement with Pfizer to investigate and optimize gene-silencing methods in animal models. The studies will utilize Mirus Bio's nucleic acid delivery platforms to target and suppress the expression of genes of interest to Pfizer.

    "The lack of effective delivery methods has been the Achilles' heel impeding progress in the emerging field of RNA interference," states Russell Smestad, Mirus Bio's president. "We are excited that this agreement will enable us to accelerate the development of our platform technologies."

    Mirus Bio has two delivery platforms. The first is hydrodynamic intravascular injection, a method to deliver nucleic acids through the bloodstream to surrounding cells and tissues. The second delivery platform involves formulating siRNA into nanoparticles, which are delivered systemically via standard intravenous injection.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

Do you agree that ecstasy should be studied for its potential therapeutic benefits?

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