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VistaGen Therapeutics (VSTA) and CATO BioVentures Sign Strategic Business Development Agreement for CNS Products

VistaGen Therapeutics Inc., a biopharmaceutical company applying leading embryonic stem cell technology to discover and develop novel treatments for central nervous system disorders, diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and Cato BioVentures, the venture capital affiliate of Cato Research Ltd., a global contract research organization, announced today the signing of a strategic business development agreement. The agreement grants VistaGen exclusive rights of first negotiation to all CNS product opportunities identified or acquired by Cato BioVentures and Cato Research.

H. Ralph Snodgrass, Ph.D., VistaGen’s President and CEO, noted, “This CNS product option arrangement allows us to expand our strategic relationship with Cato and access its broad range of business development capabilities in our core therapeutic focus area. Our operating capital requirements remain low, which reduces risk, yet we now have the important product acquistion upside potential of a fully integrated drug development company.”

Shawn K. Singh, J.D., Managing Principal of Cato BioVentures and a member of VistaGen’s Board of Directors added, “VistaGen’s CNS focus and leading embryonic stem cell-based drug discovery and development technology provide an ideal leverage opportunity for our expanding CNS product acquisition and investment activities. VistaGen’s management team is strong, its core technology is broadly applicable, and its technical expertise is deep.”

Allen Cato, M.D., Ph.D., co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Cato Research explained, “We have access to dozens of CNS product acquisition and development opportunities each year through our long standing relationships with biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies and academic institutions worldwide. Under our new agreement, these CNS product opportunities are now available to VistaGen. We have built a strong strategic drug development relationship with VistaGen around its lead CNS product candidate, AV-101, a promising new compound focused on epilepsy and neuropathic pain. We look forward to expanding that relationship with additional CNS product candidates.”

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