Epizyme, Eisai and Roche to Develop EZH2 Companion Diagnostic<4523.T>

Mon Jan 7, 2013 8:30am EST

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- Collaboration Focused on Genetically Defined Lymphomas -
CAMBRIDGE, Mass.,  Jan. 7, 2013  /PRNewswire/ --  Epizyme, Inc., a
biopharmaceutical company leading the creation of personalized therapeutics to
treat patients with genetically defined cancers, Eisai Co., Ltd. (ESALY) and
Roche (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY) announced today a collaboration to develop an
in vitro PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) based companion diagnostic test. The
collaboration's goal is to identify lymphoma patients with non-wild type EZH2,
including the  Y641  mutation. As demonstrated in Epizyme's  Nature Chemical
Biology  publication, "A selective inhibitor of EZH2 blocks H3K27 methylation
and kills mutant lymphoma cells  [link]," lymphomas with genetic alterations of
EZH2 require EZH2 enzymatic activity for proliferation, suggesting that EZH2 is
a driving oncogene in these cancers and therefore an important therapeutic

Robert Gould, Ph.D., President and CEO of Epizyme, added, "Epizyme is committed
to the creation and commercialization of personalized therapeutics and companion
diagnostics for patients with genetically defined cancers. Our collaboration
with Roche to develop a companion diagnostic, in parallel with the clinical
development of our EZH2 inhibitor with Eisai, demonstrates our commitment to
accelerate the development of this innovative personalized therapeutic for
lymphoma patients."

"Eisai and Epizyme are collaborating to develop an EZH2 inhibitor as a
personalized therapeutic for patients with genetically defined cancers,"
commented  Takashi Owa, Ph.D., Chief Innovation Officer, Eisai Product Creation
Systems. "Working together with Roche enables us to target this important
potential therapeutic for a genetically defined subset of lymphoma patients with
high unmet need."  

"Our collaboration with Epizyme and Eisai highlights Roche's position as the
partner of choice for the development and commercialization of companion
diagnostics for personalized healthcare. We are excited to be developing a
diagnostic test that will support Epizyme and Eisai in the development of an
EZH2 inhibitor as a new therapeutic for patients with genetically defined
lymphomas," said  Paul Brown, Head of Roche Molecular Diagnostics.

About Epizyme, Inc.

Epizyme is leading the creation of small molecule histone methyltransferase
inhibitors (HMTi), a new class of personalized therapeutics for patients with
genetically defined cancers. Genetic alterations in HMTs, a class of epigenetic
enzymes, drive multiple human diseases. Our approach represents the future of
healthcare by matching better medicines with the right patients.

Epizyme has benchmark alliances with Celgene, GSK and Eisai and receives funding
and strategic support from the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) and
the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). For more information, visit 

SOURCE  Epizyme, Inc.

Megan Lustig, Spectrum, +1-202-955-6222 ext. 2586, mlustig@spectrumscience.com
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