Senomyx announces initiation of development activities for new bitter blockers

SAN DIEGO, CA, February 9, 2009 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Senomyx, Inc. (NASDAQ:SNMX) , a leading company focused on using proprietary technologies to discover and develop novel flavor ingredients for the food, beverage, and ingredient supply industries, announced today that it has initiated development activities for S0812 and additional new bitter blockers. The development phase includes scale-up production activities and safety studies to support regulatory filings for the bitter blockers in the U.S. and elsewhere.

“Senomyx has two collaborators for our Bitter Blocker Program. We are pleased to report that S0812 and additional bitter blockers met the criteria established by one of our collaborators for reducing the bitterness of their products,” stated Kent Snyder, President, Chief Executive Officer, and Chairman of the Board of the Company. “In conjunction with that collaborator, Senomyx has decided to initiate development activities intended to support regulatory filings for these promising bitter blockers.”
“In addition to our two existing collaborations for the Bitter Blocker Program, we are using our proprietary technologies to create a novel ‘toolbox’ of bitter blockers that have the potential to be licensed to new partners to reduce the bitter taste of a wide variety of food, beverage, OTC healthcare, and pharmaceutical products,” said Mark Zoller, Ph.D., Senomyx’s Chief Scientific Officer and Executive Vice President of Discovery and Development.

“We believe that Senomyx’s Bitter Blocker Program has the potential to generate meaningful long-term value for the Company,” noted John Poyhonen, Senior Vice President, Chief Financial and Business Officer. “Reducing bitterness would be beneficial for the many manufacturers who would like to improve the taste characteristics of their products.”

This is the fourth time that Senomyx has initiated development activities to support regulatory filings for new flavor ingredients discovered by the Company. Senomyx is currently conducting development activities for a new sucrose enhancer, S6973, which enables the reduction of up to 50% of the sugar present in product prototypes. In addition, both S2383, an enhancer of the high-intensity sweetener sucralose, and the Company’s savory flavor ingredients have received Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) regulatory status, which allows commercialization in the U.S. and other countries.

“Senomyx has gained important experience managing several flavor ingredients through the development phase and successful regulatory reviews,” Snyder noted. “We believe this expertise will be helpful as we conduct our development activities with the new bitter blockers.”

Senomyx has an extensive intellectual property portfolio of proprietary taste receptor technologies, including patents related to bitter taste. Each individual has 25 different types of taste receptors that are associated with the perception of bitter taste (T2Rs). The Company has been granted patent claims that cover the use of amino acids and nucleic acid sequences that encode many T2R receptor subunits, as well as variants of these bitter receptors, for identifying new bitter taste modulators.

About Senomyx, Inc. (www.senomyx.com)
Senomyx is a leading company using proprietary taste receptor technologies to discover and develop novel flavor ingredients in the savory, sweet, salt, bitter, and cooling areas. Senomyx has entered into product discovery, development, and commercialization collaborations with seven of the world’s foremost food, beverage, and ingredient supply companies: Ajinomoto Co., Inc., Cadbury plc, Campbell Soup Company, The Coca-Cola Company, Firmenich SA, Nestle SA, and Solae. Nestle is currently marketing products that contain one of Senomyx’s flavor ingredients. For more information, please visit www.senomyx.com.