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Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 17:24 EDT

FLEXISEQ® Wins BVDA Innovation of 2013 Award: Innovative New Treatment for the Symptoms of Osteoarthritis

February 4, 2013

FRANKFURT, Germany and LONDON, February 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ –

The Federal Association of German Pharmacists (BVDA) today presented its “Innovation
Award 2013″ to FLEXISEQ(R), an innovative new treatment for pain and stiffness associated
with osteoarthritis (OA).

The BVDA president, and pharmacist Thomas Hieble, explained; “The jury awarded the
prize to FLEXISEQ(R) in recognition of the application of its innovative Sequessome
Technology(R) to deliver symptom relief to sufferers of OA. The technology incorporates
highly flexible phospholipid vesicles which can penetrate the skin and into the affected
joint below. Once inside the joint, they accumulate on the surface of the cartilage to
lubricate it. The result: pain relief and increased joint mobility – achieved conveniently
and without the risk of the well recognised, systemic side effects associated with drugs
typically used for the treatment of OA.”

In their latest editions, various renowned medical journals such as “Arzte Zeitung”
and the “Zeitschrift fuer Rheumatologie” reported on this medical advance.

FLEXISEQ has an innovative mode of action due to its use of Sequessome Technology and
its convenient gel formulation enables patients to self administer FLEXISEQ topically to
the affected joint. The Sequessome(TM) vesicles contained within are proven to enter the
synovial joint after application and increase phospholipid levels in the synovial fluid
where they are known to be depleted in joints affected by OA. This physical, mode of
action reduces the pain, (in phase III clinical trials, as effectively as the frequently
prescribed oral drug medicine – celecoxib) and also improves joint mobility, thereby
giving easier movement to patients.

Hundreds of millions of people worldwide suffer from OA, a chronic joint disease which
makes the lives of those affected permanently more difficult. According to the Robert Koch
Institute, the likelihood of contracting OA increases dramatically with age.

Professor Herbert Kellner, Munich, one of the panellists at the BVDA awards said,
“More than 50% of people over 65 have already developed OA and its prevalence is as high
as 90% in people over 75. Thus OA is of enormous social and economic significance.”

Patients with OA suffer from chronic pain and joint stiffness. “NSAID’s and COX II’s
are frequently used without critical evaluation”, said Professor Martin Wehling, of The
University of Heidelberg, a specialist in elderly patients with cardiovascular conditions.
“However, this class of drugs is associated with a high risk.” He estimated that every
year more than 3,000 patients die from bleeding complications in Germany alone. Wehling
said that he was acutely aware that many OA patients also have other health issues such as
cardiovascular conditions and hence NSAIDs/COX II are contra indicated or must only be
used with caution in patients. In addition, chronic NSAID use is associated with
approximately 20 other severe side effects. FLEXISEQ now provides a more appropriate and
safer solution for these patients. This enables sufferers to avoid drug to drug
interactions with other medicines which they may need to take for other common diseases.
FLEXISEQ does not contain any pharmacological ingredients but provides a physical rather
than chemical based treatment for this painful and debilitating disease. This physical
approach avoids many of the significant side effects of conventional chemical based
treatments alluded to by Professor Wehling.

Dr Matthias Rother, Munich, who was instrumental to the development of
SequessomeTechnology, explained that “FLEXISEQ was evaluated in a comprehensive clinical
trial programme: 1,675 patients were treated with FLEXISEQ in six studies. Even for a
treatment period, within one of the trials of up to 52 weeks, FLEXISEQ was well
tolerated.”

Michael Earl, Chief Operating Officer of Pro Bono Bio, who own FLEXISEQ, said “Leading
Rheumatologists are concerned about the limited treatments available for OA sufferers and
also about the side effects of some existing therapies. FLEXISEQ is an important part of
the answer to these concerns. Its launch in its home market of Germany in 2012 drew a lot
of attention from physicians and pharmacists. We are delighted to win the BVDA Innovation
Award 2013, and encourage German patients to visit their local pharmacist to find out more
about this exciting development for the millions of sufferers of Osteoarthritis in Europe.
We are also delighted we have already started to export FLEXISEQ to Asia where the product
has received a very warm welcome.”

Separately from the BVDA award, German patients are already benefiting from the
treatment. One patient who wishes to remain anonymous reported, “I started using FLEXISEQ
on the 3rd January 2013. Before then, I was hardly able to walk properly, sometimes I used
walking aids but did not get further than 60 m and I was in a lot of pain. I heard about
FLEXISEQ on ‘Feierabend.de’ and I AM VERY HAPPY! Now I can already walk 1.5 km – without
pain!! I have an appointment for a scan of my knee in a clinic on the 3rd of April, but I
am unsure whether to attend the appointment.”

About Pro Bono Bio(TM)

Please refer to http://www.probonobio.com

About FLEXISEQ(R)

Please refer to http://www.flexiseq.com

        For further information please contact:

        Pro Bono Bio in London
        Martyn Smith
        +44(0)20-7291-5491
        martyn.smith@pbbio.com
        info@pbbio.com

SOURCE Pro Bono Bio


Source: PR Newswire