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Dietary Cocoa Flavanols Improve Vascular Function in Patients with Kidney Dysfunction

December 17, 2015 [Washington, DC] – A dietary intervention study published today in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (CJASN) demonstrates that the daily intake of cocoa flavanols could significantly improve vascular function and reduce diastolic blood pressure in kidney patients on chronic hemodialysis. Patients undergoing chronic hemodialysis were randomized to receive either a beverage containing a standardized amount of cocoa flavanols (450 mg per serving), bioactive compounds extracted from cocoa beans (provided by Mars Symbioscience), or a nutrient-matched control test drink containing no cocoa flavanols. The study participants consumed the assigned drink twice daily for 30 days. After 30 days, the group consuming 900 mg of cocoa flavanols daily had significantly improved blood vessel function and reduced diastolic blood pressure. This study suggests that cocoa flavanols may be one dietary approach for improving cardiovascular-related health outcomes in patients with kidney dysfunction undergoing hemodialysis.

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Calithera Biosciences Gains Exclusive, Worldwide License to Mars Symbioscience’s Arginase Inhibitors

South San Francisco, CA, December 9, 2014 -- As a part of Mars’ extensive cocoa flavanol research program, a selection of arginase inhibitors was discovered. To best hone and develop this discovery in the application of tumor immunology and cancer therapy a licensing agreement was made. Calithera Biosciences, Inc. (NASDAQ:CALA) signed an exclusive global license agreement with Mars Symbioscience (“Symbioscience”), a division of Mars, Incorporated, granting Calithera rights to research, develop and commercialize this portfolio of arginase inhibitors.

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