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Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) Release: VICTRELIS™ Honoured With the 2012 Prix Galien


11/15/2012 8:04:43 AM

Merck's hepatitis C treatment receives prestigious Innovative Product Award

KIRKLAND, QC, Nov. 15, 2012 /CNW/ - Merck is proud to announce that VICTRELIS (boceprevir), a first-in-class oral hepatitis C virus (HCV) protease inhibitor for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C (CHC) genotype 1 infection, received the Prix Galien Canada 2012 - Innovative Product Award. The most prestigious award in the field of Canadian pharmaceutical research and innovation,1 this annual honour is given to the product that has made the most significant overall contribution to patient care in Canada in terms of efficacy, safety, benefits and innovation.

"Given Merck's ongoing commitment to research to improve outcomes for patients suffering from chronic hepatitis C infection, it is with great pride that we accept this Prix Galien for boceprevir," said Gregg Szabo, Vice President, with Merck Canada. "This award is further recognition that boceprevir marks a significant step forward in hepatitis C treatment. More Canadians can now be cured of their hepatitis C infection, so that fewer may struggle with the consequences of end-stage liver disease, liver transplants and liver cancer."

Boceprevir is the first direct-acting antiviral medication approved in Canada for the treatment of CHC genotype 1 infection, in combination with peginterferon alpha and ribavirin (peg/riba) in adult patients (18 years and older) with compensated liver disease, including cirrhosis, who are previously untreated or who have failed previous therapy.2 Prior to its approval in late July 2011, available therapies had been effective for only a minority of CHC genotype 1 patients.3,4

About the Prix Galien
The Prix Galien Canada is a branch of Innovation Life Canada and is composed of two awards: the Prix Galien Research Award recognizing the outstanding contribution of a researcher or a research team to Canadian biopharmaceutical research; and the Prix Galien for Innovative Product Award for a pharmaceutical product whose efficacy, safety and innovation contribute to enhancing the quality of life of Canadians.

For more information, visit: www.prix-galien-canada.com.

About Merck
Today's Merck is a global healthcare leader working to help the world be well.  Merck is known as MSD outside the United States and Canada. Through our medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, and consumer and animal products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to healthcare through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. For more information about our operations in Canada, visit www.merck.ca.

Forward-Looking Statement

This news release includes "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements may include, but are not limited to, statements about the benefits of the merger between Merck and Schering-Plough, including future financial and operating results, the combined company's plans, objectives, expectations and intentions and other statements that are not historical facts. Such statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of Merck's management and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ from those set forth in the forward-looking statements.

The following factors, among others, could cause actual results to differ from those set forth in the forward-looking statements: the possibility that all of the expected synergies from the merger of Merck and Schering-Plough will not be realized, or will not be realized within the expected time period; the impact of pharmaceutical industry regulation and health care legislation in the United States and internationally; Merck's ability to accurately predict future market conditions; dependence on the effectiveness of Merck's patents and other protections for innovative products; and the exposure to litigation and/or regulatory actions.

Merck undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Additional factors that could cause results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements can be found in Merck's 2011 Annual Report on Form 10-K and the company's other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) available at the SEC's Internet site (www.sec.gov).

TM Trademark of Schering Corporation, a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc. Used under license.

References

_____________________

1 Prix Galien Canada. http://eng.prix-galien-canada.com/prix_galien_canada.html. Accessed November 5, 2012.

2 VICTRELISTM, Product Monograph, July 27, 2011, p. 3.

3 Poordad, F., et al., for the SPRINT-2 Investigators.  Boceprevir for Untreated Chronic HCV Genotype 1 Infection. N Engl J Med 2011; 364:1195-1206, page 1195.

4 Bacon, B.R., et al., for the HCV RESPOND-2 Investigators. Boceprevir for Previously Treated Chronic HCV Genotype 1 Infection. N Engl J Med 2011; 364:1207-1217, p. 1207.



SOURCE MERCK

Image with caption: "Dr. Jacques Gagné, President of the Prix Galien jury, presents the 2012 Prix Galien for Victrelis to Gregg Szabo, Vice President of Merck Canada (left) at The Fairmont Royal York Hotel in Toronto, Wednesday evening, November 14, 2012. The Canadian Press Images PHOTO/Merck Canada (CNW Group/MERCK)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20121115_C8277_PHOTO_EN_20720.jpg


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