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Evotec OAI (Germany) (EVTG.F) And Roche (RHHBY) Form Global Alliance To Jointly Discover Novel Drugs


6/21/2006 10:53:41 AM

HAMBURG, German and OXFORD, England and BASEL, Switzerland, June 21 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Roche and Evotec AG today announced that they have formed an alliance to jointly discover and develop compounds against a target for CNS diseases and other indications.

Leveraging the expertise developed by Evotec on this target, and as part of their CNS drug discovery focus, Evotec and Roche will collaborate to identify inhibitors involved in the potential treatment of a range of diseases. Both companies believe that this target is of high priority and that partnering their respective drug discovery efforts and expertise will bring about the successful and timely discovery of new drugs.

Dr John Kemp, Executive Vice President Research & Development at Evotec, said: "This collaboration capitalises on Evotec's and Roche's complementary drug discovery capabilities and underlines the value of our drug discovery platform and CNS expertise. We are delighted to join forces with Roche, one of the world's premier pharmaceutical companies, to discover novel drug candidates that will enrich our companies' pipelines. We have been working with Roche for many years in an atmosphere of mutual respect - in service agreements and in-licensing of CNS drugs - and are looking forward to now partnering one of our CNS discovery projects into this joint effort."

"This agreement builds on the strategic alliance that Roche and Evotec have established over the last five years", said Dr Peter Hug, Global Head of Pharma Partnering at Roche. "Through the multiple dimensions of the Roche-Evotec relationship we are endeavouring to develop compounds that will make a difference in patients lives."

Roche and Evotec will jointly progress projects up to clinical development, at which stage Roche will have exclusive rights to the development of the drug candidates. In return, Evotec will be eligible to receive milestone payments that could exceed 100 million Euros in total, plus royalties on the sale of any products. If Roche does not exercise these opt-in rights, Evotec will have the right to opt-in, making adjusted payments to Roche.

About Evotec AG

Evotec is a leader in the discovery and development of novel small molecule drugs. Both through its own discovery programmes and through contract research partnerships, the Company is providing highest quality research results to its partners in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries.

In proprietary projects, Evotec specialises in finding new treatments for diseases of the central nervous system (CNS). Evotec has three Phase I clinical programmes: EVT 201, a GABAA modulator for the treatment of insomnia, EVT 101, a subtype selective NMDA receptor antagonist for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease and EVT 301, a selective and reversible inhibitor of MAO-B for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.

In contract research, Evotec has established itself as the partner of choice for pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies worldwide. The Company provides innovative and often integrated solutions from drug target to clinic through an unmatched range of capabilities, including early stage assay development and screening through to medicinal chemistry and drug manufacturing.

In 2005, Evotec has generated sales of EUR 80 million with approximately 600 people located in Hamburg, Germany and near Oxford and in Glasgow, UK.

www.evotec.com

About Roche

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is one of the world's leading research-focused healthcare groups in the fields of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. As a supplier of innovative products and services for the early detection, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease, the Group contributes on a broad range of fronts to improving people's health and quality of life. Roche is a world leader in diagnostics, the leading supplier of medicines for cancer and transplantation and a market leader in virology. In 2005 sales by the Pharmaceuticals Division totalled 27.3 billion Swiss francs, and the Diagnostics Division posted sales of 8.2 billion Swiss francs. Roche employs roughly 70,000 people in 150 countries and has R&D agreements and strategic alliances with numerous partners, including majority ownership interests in Genentech and Chugai. Additional information about the Roche Group is available on the Internet (www.roche.com).

About Roche as a Partner

Roche is a valued partner to more than 50 companies worldwide. Over the past two years, Roche has led the pharmaceutical industry in the number of clinical compound deals signed. In 2005, Roche entered into nine partnerships to jointly develop products for optimal patient benefit and value. Partnerships continue to strengthen Roche's positions in oncology, virology, transplantation, and primary care. Roche's partnering culture encourages innovation through a unique pairing of collaboration and autonomy.

Statements included in this press release which are not historical in nature are intended to be, and are hereby identified as, "forward-looking statements" for purposes of the safe harbour provided by Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements may be identified by words including "anticipates", "believes", "intends", "estimates", "expects" and similar expressions. The company cautions readers that forward-looking statements, including without limitation those relating to the company's future operations and business prospects, are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Factors that may affect future operations and business prospects include, but are not limited to, clinical and scientific results and developments concerning corporate collaborations and the company's proprietary rights and other factors described in the prospectus relating to the company's recent public offering.

Contact: Evotec AG Roche-Europe Anne Hennecke Ian Metcalfe Director, Investor Relations Pharma Partnering & Corporate Communications Phone: +49-(0)40-56081-286 Phone: +41-(0)61-687-0272 anne.hennecke@evotec.comian.metcalfe@roche.com

Evotec AG

CONTACT: Evotec AG - Anne Hennecke, Director, Investor Relations, Phone:+49-(0)40-56081-286, anne.hennecke@evotec.com; Roche-Europe - Ian Metcalfe,Pharma Partnering & Corporate Communications, Phone: +41-(0)61-687-0272,ian.metcalfe@roche.com


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