Curis Presents Study Showing Stimulation of Hair Growth by Small Molecule Hedgehog Pathway Agonist CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 22, 2005-- Report wins first prize among poster presentations at annual meeting of American Academy of Dermatology Curis, Inc. (NASDAQ: CRIS), a therapeutic drug development company, today announced that Curis scientists have demonstrated that a small molecule drug compound can induce hair growth in a preclinical model. The data were presented February 19 at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology that is being held in New Orleans from February 18-22. The report, which was presented by senior author Dr. Rudy Paladini, was awarded the first prize among poster presentations at the meeting. The drug compound in the study is a small molecule agonist of the Hedgehog signaling pathway. In the skin, Hedgehog signaling is required for hair follicle morphogenesis during development and for regulating hair follicle growth and cycling in the adult. In the current study, the small molecule Hedgehog agonist, when topically formulated and applied to the skin, was able to transition the hair follicles from the resting phase of the hair cycle to the growth phase, resulting in pronounced stimulation of hair growth. The authors of the study conclude that the topical application of a Hedgehog agonist may be effective in treating hair disorders, such as male pattern baldness and female pattern hair loss. Daniel Passeri, President and Chief Executive Officer of Curis, said, "We are very pleased with these results and with the progress that has been made in our hair growth program. We are also evaluating the requirements for clinical development in hair growth indications in order to decide on an appropriate strategy for moving this program forward." The Hedgehog agonist program was exclusively licensed to Wyeth Pharmaceuticals in February 2004. Under the terms of the license agreement, Curis retained the right to develop Hedgehog agonists for topical treatment to stimulate hair growth. The terms of the agreement include Wyeth's right to approve any compounds that Curis will ultimately develop in this area. In December 2004, Wyeth approved the reversion of a group of Hedgehog agonist compounds for use in our hair program.