U.S. Congresswoman Louise Slaughter Visits Oyagen

Cong. Slaughter Visits OyaGen Labs; Encourages Support for HIV a Functional Cure for HIV and the Growth of Biotech in Upstate NY

ROCHESTER, NY–(Nov 13, 2013) – OyaGen announced today Congresswoman Louise Slaughter toured its laboratories at the Rochester BioVenture Center in Henrietta and met with its development team. During the visit, the Congresswoman was updated on the progress being made in moving OyaGen’s drug programs toward clinical development. She also discussed with management how OyaGen’s approach can provide solutions for the government’s HIV policies and programs regarding the next generation of AIDS therapy, PrEP and global disease eradication.

Congresswoman Slaughter and Dr. Ryan Bennett

Dr. Ryan Bennett discusses with the Congresswoman the importance of advanced robotics in drug discovery.

Dr. Harold Smith, the Founder and CEO of OyaGen said, “We are very pleased and gratified that Congresswoman Slaughter could schedule a visit with us at OyaGen. She has been supportive of our efforts over several years and has a scientific appreciation for our unique approach to HIV. In this the Congresswoman has shown strong support for Biotech as part of the economic development of upstate New York economy. The recent $1.4 M grant from the National Institutes of Health and investment from the New York State retirement fund will have a major impact on the ability of OyaGen to achieve its goals.”

Congresswoman Slaughter and Dr. Kimberly Prohaska

Dr. Kimberly Prohaska shows the Congresswoman flourescent images of cells resulting from drug treatment.

“As a microbiologist and a lifelong advocate for public health, I have always supported initiatives that help those afflicted by HIV and AIDS live longer, fuller, and healthier lives,” Rep. Slaughter said. “OyaGen’s critical work on HIV and AIDS treatment is part of a long tradition of dynamic medical innovation in our region. I commend Dr. Smith and the OyaGen team for their hard work and I’m proud that these cutting edge therapies are being developed right here in Rochester.”

OyaGen is developing first in class HIV drugs that have, in recent months drawn increased attention and support from the government agencies responsible for efforts to conquer HIV/AIDS in the US. AIDS remains a significant threat to the nation’s health, healthcare economics and national security.

Dr. Smith added, “We believe that the Congresswoman’s scientific insight, appreciation for the scale of the AIDS epidemic and advocacy will affect public policy in ways that can significantly help achieve the goal of an AIDS-free world. It was very helpful to have an opportunity to show the Congresswoman what we are doing here in Rochester that will have a global impact on human health. OyaGen’s lead compounds are a novel therapeutic approach and we believe they will be essential in achieving a functional cure for AIDS.”

About OyaGen
OyaGen Inc. is a privately held development stage biotechnology company located in Rochester NY. OyaGen develops first in class therapeutics based on its expertise in the use of editing enzymes as therapeutics and/or drug targets. OyaGen’s current therapeutic focus is on treatments and cures for viral illnesses, particularly HIV/AIDS and will pursue cancer treatments as part of its future goals. In addition to its investors, OyaGen’s work has received public support from the NIH, the Gates Foundation as well as other public and private sources.