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Synta Announces Presentation of Small Cell Lung Cancer Results at IASLC 14th World Conference on Lung Cancer
-Ganetespib more potent than 17-AAG in SCLC cells-
-Synergy demonstrated in sequential ganetespib and doxorubicin treatment regimen-

LEXINGTON, Mass., Jul 06, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp. (NASDAQ: SNTA) today announced that results presented at the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) 14th World Conference on Lung Cancer showed that ganetespib (STA-9090) is more potent than 17-AAG and is synergistic with doxorubicin in a model of small cell lung cancer. Ganetespib is a potent inhibitor of heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90) currently being studied in a broad range of clinical trials with approximately 400 patients treated to date. Ganetespib is structurally unrelated to first-generation, ansamycin-family Hsp90 inhibitors such as 17-AAG or IPI-504.

An investigator-sponsored Phase 2 single agent trial of ganetespib is currently being conducted in patients with relapsed or refractory small cell lung cancer.

"Results presented today show that ganetespib has greater potency in small cell lung cancer cell lines compared to 17-AAG and also suggests that ganetespib and doxorubicin may be synergistic when dosed sequentially," said Giuseppe Giaccone, M.D. , Ph.D., Branch Chief, Medical Oncology Branch and Affiliates, National Cancer Institute. "Intriguingly, ganetespib withdrawal after 48-72 hours of treatment induces precipitous cell death, suggesting that intermittent treatment may be an effective strategy in small cell lung cancer. These results are encouraging and suggest the potential for ganetespib single agent or combination clinical development strategies in small cell lung cancer."

About Small Cell Lung Cancer

According to the National Cancer Institute, about 15% of all lung cancer cases are small cell lung cancer amounting to approximately 33,000 new cases in the United States each year. Almost all cases of SCLC are due to cigarette smoking. The five year survival rate for small cell lung cancer is 6%.

About Ganetespib

Ganetespib (formerly STA-9090) is a potent, synthetic, small-molecule inhibitor of heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90). Hsp90 is a molecular chaperone required for the proper folding and activation of many cancer-promoting proteins, and is recognized as a key facilitator of cancer cell growth and survival. In preclinical experiments, ganetespib has shown activity in multiple tumor models both as a single agent and in combination with certain widely used cancer agents. Ganetespib is currently being evaluated in a broad range of cancer clinical trials. In these trials, ganetespib has shown clinical activity in heavily pretreated patients and has been well tolerated to date with no evidence of severe liver or common ocular toxicities seen with other Hsp90 inhibitors. The most common adverse event seen to date has been diarrhea, which has been manageable with standard supportive care. Information on clinical trials with ganetespib can be found at

About Synta Pharmaceuticals

Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp. is a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing, and commercializing small molecule drugs to extend and enhance the lives of patients with severe medical conditions, including cancer and chronic inflammatory diseases. Synta has a unique chemical compound library, an integrated discovery engine, and a diverse pipeline of clinical- and preclinical-stage drug candidates with distinct mechanisms of action and novel chemical structures. All Synta drug candidates were invented by Synta scientists using our compound library and discovery capabilities. For more information, please visit

Safe Harbor Statement

This media release may contain forward-looking statements about Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp. Such forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "will", "would", "should", "expects", "anticipates", "intends", "plans", "believes", "may", "estimates", "predicts", "projects", or similar expressions intended to identify forward-looking statements. Such statements, including statements relating to the timing, developments and progress of our ganetespib clinical and preclinical program, reflect our current views with respect to future events and are based on assumptions and subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including those described in "Risk Factors" of our Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Synta undertakes no obligation to publicly update forward-looking statements, whether because of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

SOURCE: Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp.

Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp.
Rob Kloppenburg, 781-541-7125