Debiopharm International SA

Debiopharm Group(TM) Regains Full Rights to Alisporivir Program

Lausanne, Switzerland (ots/PRNewswire) - - Novartis returns Alisporivir (DEB025) to Debiopharm Group(TM) including

all rights for HCV and other indications -

Debiopharm Group(TM) (Debiopharm), a Swiss-based global biopharmaceutical company, today announced that it has updated its arrangement with Novartis to regain full rights to Alisporivir (DEB025) currently completing two Phase 2 studies of interferon-free treatment in Hepatitis C.

"Novartis has decided that, as part of an ongoing portfolio transformation, hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related indications would no longer be a strategic focus for them" said Thierry Mauvernay, Delegate of the Board of Debiopharm Group. "We appreciate Novartis' rapid agreement to return the Alisporivir program to us promptly and in good order. We are looking forward to continuing the development of this exciting molecule in one or more indications and we have already started discussing with potential partners."

"Owing to its unique mode of action, Alisporivir promises to be a useful additional tool to combine with other therapeutics in the treatment of HCV. There is also a variety of other potential indications where Alisporivir may bring benefit to patients" commented Dr Andrés Mc Allister, CSO of Debiopharm International.

Debiopharm and Novartis entered into a strategic collaboration for the development of Alisporivir in January 2010. This arrangement allows for the transfer, at Debiopharm's election, of ongoing Alisporivir Phase 2 clinical trials to Debiopharm and transfers all rights for HCV and other indications.

About Alisporivir

Alisporivir is a non-immunosuppressive cyclophilin inhibitor that is currently in development as a host-targeting agent for the treatment of Hepatitis C. It has already been tested in over 2,000 patients and has demonstrated promising efficacy including in difficult-to-treat patients with an acceptable safety profile. Alisporivir has the potential to be used for the treatment of additional diseases such as other viral infections, certain muscular dystrophies, and myocardial infarction.

About Debiopharm Group(TM)

Debiopharm Group(TM) is a Swiss-based global biopharmaceutical group of four companies active in drug development, GMP manufacturing of proprietary drugs, diagnostics, and investments. Debiopharm International SA is focused on the development of prescription drugs that target unmet medical needs. The company in-licenses, develops promising drug candidates. The products are commercialized by pharmaceutical out-licensing partners to give access to the largest number of patients worldwide. For more information, please visit: http://www.debiopharm.com.

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Debiopharm International SA Contact
Christelle Tur
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christelle.tur@debiopharm.com
Tel: +41-(0)21-321-01-11

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