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1 <p><b>PLIVA and The Althexis Company Announce a Collaboration on the Structure-Based
2 Drug Design of Novel Broad Spectrum Antibiotics</b></p>
3 <p>Zagreb, 8th February 1999</p>
4 <p>PLIVA d.d., Zagreb, Croatia and The Althexis Company, Inc., Boston, MA., USA,
5 today announced that they have entered into a collaboration to develop and commercialise
6 novel broad spectrum antibiotics using structure-based drug design ("SBDD")
7 technologies. PLIVA support for the Althexis program may total $14.4 million
8 over three years in research funding and milestone payments. Additional future
9 revenues to Althexis and PLIVA may result from certain exclusive marketing rights
10 each retains under the collaboration agreement.</p>
11 <p>Under terms of the agreement, PLIVA receives worldwide rights to market any
12 drugs which result from two specified research projects defined in the agreement,
13 except for the countries of Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan, where Althexis reserves
14 those rights. The partners will each retain non-exclusive rights in China.</p>
15 <p>Althexis and PLIVA will apply their expertise in the areas of structural biology,
16 biophysics, biochemistry and chemistry, and in chemistry, microbiology and drug
17 development, respectively, to two antibacterial targets. The companies will
18 pool and share their data, including pre-clinical and clinical results, in support
19 of activities in their respective geographical territories.</p>
20 <p>"We are thrilled to have PLIVA as a partner in our structure-based antibiotics
21 design program", stated Manuel Navia, Ph.D., a co-founder and President of The
22 Althexis Company. "The last twenty years of antimicrobial research have seen
23 a decline in the introduction of new antibacterials and a disturbing increase
24 in the resistance to existing antibiotics. There is a pressing need to broaden
25 the arsenal of antibacterial agents beyond those currently in use. Our collaboration
26 agreement with PLIVA gives Althexis the financial and scientific support it
27 needs to move forward against its initial bacterial targets" concluded Dr. Navia.</p>
28 <p>"Our two organisations fit together very well", said Patrick Connelly, Ph.D.,
29 a co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Althexis. "Our expertise in SBDD
30 nicely complements the vigorous program of drug discovery and development that
31 already thrives at PLIVA. The excitement generated during our initial scientific
32 discussions was palpable. Althexis has put together an impressive group of pharmaceutical
33 industry veterans, as well as University and industry based joint ventures,
34 to conduct its research projects. Now we can proceed expeditiously to begin
35 work on the PLIVA-sponsored projects that we are so optimistic about" concluded
36 Dr. Connelly.</p>
37 <p>"PLIVA has a long and distinguished history of truly innovative research, dating
38 back to the founding of the PLIVA Research Institute by Vladimir Prelog, 1975
39 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry. PLIVA's achievements include the discovery, development,
40 and manufacture of azithromycin, the outstanding macrolide antibiotic marketed
41 by Pfizer and PLIVA. We are confident that this partnership can meet the very
42 ambitious development and commercialisation goals we have set and, ultimately,
43 contribute to PLIVA's pipeline of novel anti-infective agents", Zeljko Covic,
44 CEO of PLIVA stated.</p>
45 <p>"We are extremely pleased to collaborate with The Althexis Company. PLIVA believes
46 in the power of SBDD, and Althexis' expertise in this area provides us with
47 a terrific complement to the antibiotics discovery program at PLIVA. This is
48 a powerful collaboration and represents a unique opportunity for PLIVA to explore
49 a state-of-the-art approach to making drugs" stated Radan Spaventi, M.D., Director
50 of the Research Institute at PLIVA.</p>
51 <p>PLIVA is the biggest pharmaceutical company in the area of Central and Eastern
52 Europe and has been listed on the London Stock Exchange since 1996. In 1997,
53 PLIVA acquired a majority stake in one of the biggest Polish pharmaceutical
54 companies, today known as "PLIVA Krakow". PLIVA's current operations consist
55 of research, the development, manufacture, and sale of pharmaceutical, animal
56 health and veterinary, food, and cosmetics products. It is a company with a
57 strong focus on the research and development of new chemical entities. PLIVA's
58 biggest success to date has been the invention, development, and production
59 of azithromycin, which was licensed to Pfizer for worldwide marketing except
60 in countries where PLIVA has retained rights. Azithromycin (Zithromax, Sumamed)
61 posted sales of $1 billion (US) in 1998. Several joint ventures with international
62 pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, as well as various scientific organisations,
63 together with a significant reshaping of its internal research activities support
64 PLIVA's commercial and strategic goals of becoming an internationally recognised
65 research-driven pharmaceuticals company.</p>
66 <p>The Althexis Company, based in Boston, was founded in 1998 by Drs. Manuel Navia
67 and Patrick Connelly, Paul J. Mass of Mass Ventures LLC (Atlanta, GA) and Michael
68 Dailey of Dailey & Partners (Southport, CT). The Althexis Company is dedicated
69 to discovering novel small molecule drugs to treat diseases in humans. Althexis
70 is committed to the practice of SBDD, a revolutionary approach to drug discovery
71 and development that allows a smaller, more modestly capitalised company to
72 compete effectively with even the largest players in the pharmaceutical industry.
73 The scientific founders of Althexis have been pioneers in the establishment
74 and evolution of SBDD as a scientific and commercial success.</p>

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