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3 <p> Zagreb, 1st February 1999 </p>
4 <p>PLIVA, the largest pharmaceutical company from Central and Eastern Europe,
5 announces that they are today signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the
6 UK-based pharmaceutical company, Glaxo Wellcome plc, for a research collaboration
7 aimed at finding the next generation of macrolide antibiotics, capable of overcoming
8 the growing problem of treatment resistance.</p>
9 <p> The Memorandum of Understanding, while not legally binding, records the intention
10 of the two companies to enter a three-year collaboration involving scientists
11 in Zagreb, Verona and Stevenage. The companies will aim to conclude a formal
12 agreement by the end of March 1999. </p>
13 <p>The collaboration will provide extensive benefits by combining PLIVA's long
14 established macrolide research programme, which has already yielded discoveries
15 like Azithromycin, and Glaxo Wellcome's expertise in microbiology and combinatorial
16 chemistry and their ability in drug development. Both companies have a long
17 and successful track record in the anti-infectives area. </p>
18 <p>The success of macrolides is largely due to their spectrum of activity, covering
19 so-called atypical pathogens, such as chlamydia and mycoplasma. These organisms
20 are increasingly being recognised as causal agents in lower and upper respiratory
21 tract infections, such as pneumonia and bronchitis, and are intrinsically resistant
22 to many antibiotics. The existing macrolides have been very successful but there
23 is now room for a novel molecule which combines the best properties of existing
24 macrolides, together with activity against resistant bacteria.</p>
25 <p> Mr. Zeljko Covic, PLIVA's CEO, emphasises that: "PLIVA has a long experience
26 especially in medicinal chemistry of complex macrolides proven by the successful
27 invention of Azithromycin, a leading compound in this class. Combining PLIVA
28 and Glaxo Wellcome's expertise will provide genuine synergies and will hopefully
29 accelerate the discovery of the next generation macrolide." </p>
30 <p>During collaboration both companies will share responsibility for activities
31 up to Phase I, with Glaxo Wellcome taking responsibility for clinical development
32 beyond Phase I. On the other hand, PLIVA will be responsible for development
33 of a commercially viable process for the manufacturing of a lead compound. Furthermore,
34 it is envisaged that PLIVA will be the primary production source for active
35 substance. </p>

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