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Ablynx and Algeta Enter Into a Research Collaboration to Evaluate the Potential of Novel Alpha-Pharmaceuticals Comprising Thorium-277 Conjugated to Tumour-Targeting Nanobodies

GHENT, BELGIUM and OSLO, NORWAY -- (Marketwire) -- 11/21/12 -- Ablynx (EURONEXT BRUSSELS: ABLX) and Algeta ASA (OSE: ALGETA) announce a research collaboration to evaluate a novel Targeted Thorium Conjugate (TTC) based on combining Algeta's proprietary thorium-227 alpha-pharmaceutical payload with Nanobodies® generated using Ablynx's proprietary technology platform.

Under the terms of the collaboration, Ablynx will provide access to novel Nanobodies against a specific, undisclosed target and Algeta will provide access to chelation and conjugation technologies, as well as to its alpha-emitter thorium-227. Both companies will contribute resources towards the collaboration, which is expected to last for up to a year initially with the option for extension thereafter. No further terms have been disclosed.

Andreas Menrad, Chief Scientific Officer of Ablynx, said:
"We are very pleased to be working with Algeta to discover and develop novel cancer therapeutics based on both companies' proprietary technologies. Our Nanobodies have the potential to selectively and efficiently deliver Algeta's thorium-227 to the site of the tumour. We are very excited about combining our unique and powerful technology with Algeta's leading payload expertise to search for breakthrough opportunities in oncology."

Thomas Ramdahl, Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Algeta, said:
"The collaboration with Ablynx, the fifth TTC programme to be disclosed by Algeta, is designed to evaluate the potential of a Nanobody to act as the targeting molecule for the alpha-pharmaceutical payload, thorium-227. This payload has the potential to provide higher potency and more effective delivery over other therapeutic payloads, with the further advantage that there are no known cellular resistance mechanisms to the cell killing properties of alpha particles."

About Ablynx
Ablynx is a biopharmaceutical company engaged in the discovery and development of Nanobodies®, a novel class of therapeutic proteins based on single-domain antibody fragments, for a range of serious human diseases, including inflammation, haematology, oncology and pulmonary disease. Today, the Company has approximately 25 programmes in the pipeline and seven Nanobodies at clinical development stage. Ablynx has ongoing research collaborations and significant partnerships with major pharmaceutical companies including Boehringer Ingelheim, Merck KGaA, Novartis and Merck & Co. The Company is headquartered in Ghent, Belgium. More information can be found on www.ablynx.com.

About the Ablynx Nanobody platform
Nanobodies are antibody-derived therapeutic proteins that contain the unique structural and functional properties of naturally-occurring heavy-chain antibodies. The Nanobody technology was originally developed following the discovery that camelidae (camels and llamas) possess fully functional antibodies that lack light chains. These heavy-chain antibodies contain a single variable domain (VHH) and two constant domains (CH2 and CH3). Importantly, the cloned and isolated VHH domain is a perfectly stable polypeptide harbouring the full antigen-binding capacity of the original heavy-chain antibody. These newly discovered VHH domains with their unique structural and functional properties form the basis of a new generation of therapeutic antibodies which Ablynx has named Nanobodies.

About Algeta
Algeta is a company focused on developing novel targeted therapies for patients with cancer based on its alpha-pharmaceutical platform. The Company is headquartered in Oslo, Norway, and has a US subsidiary, Algeta US, LLC, based in Cambridge, MA performing commercial marketing operations in the US. Algeta is listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange (Ticker: ALGETA). For more information please visit www.algeta.com.

About the Algeta TTC Platform
Algeta is evaluating the potential utility of alpha-particle emitting elements in the treatment of cancer. Previous studies[1] have indicated that such elements may have value in treating cancers by causing double-strand DNA breaks that trigger cell death, and have also shown that the effects of alpha-emission are highly localised as a result of the very short range of the alpha particle (2-10 cell diameters). Thorium-227 is one alpha-particle emitting element (radionuclide) that has been selected by Algeta for further investigation. By linking thorium-227 to cancer-targeting molecules such as monoclonal antibodies, Algeta believes it may be possible to develop a pipeline of targeted alpha-pharmaceuticals, termed Targeted Thorium Conjugates, or TTCs. The TTC platform is at an early research phase in development. Algeta intends to evaluate TTCs in a broad range of cancer types to determine whether the TTC platform could offer advantages over naked (un-armed) antibodies or antibody-drug conjugate technologies that use cytotoxic drugs (rather than alpha-emitting elements) as payloads. Such advantages could include increased potency, a more localised tumouricidal effect and the potential to address drug resistance by virtue of the physical action of the alpha particles.

[1] Hall (1994) Radiobiology for the Radiologist (Lippincott, Philadelphia)

press release in pdf : http://hugin.info/137912/R/1659601/537304.pdf

For more information, please contact
Dr Edwin Moses
Chairman and CEO
t: +32 (0)9 262 00 07
m: +44 (0)7771 954 193 /
+32 (0)473 39 50 68
e: [email protected]

Marieke Vermeersch
Associate Director Investor Relations
t: +32 (0)9 262 00 82
m: +32 (0)479 49 06 03
e: [email protected]
Follow us on Twitter @AblynxABLX

Mary-Jane Elliott, Amber Bielecka, Claire Dickinson
t: +44 207 920 2330
e: [email protected]

Mike Booth
Communications & Corporate Affairs
+47 2202 4510
[email protected]

Kari Watson
MacDougall Biomedical Communications
+1 781 235 3060
[email protected]

Media enquiries:
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Citigate Dewe Rogerson
+44 207 638 9571
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US investor enquiries:
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The Trout Group
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[email protected]

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