Cipher Pharma Out-Licenses Rights To ASF-1096 For Anorectal Disorders

MISSISSAUGA, ON, June 20, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - Cipher Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:CPHR; TSX:CPH) ("Cipher" or "the Company") today announced that Edesa Biotech Inc. ("Edesa") has licensed the rights to ASF-1096 (R-salbutamol) for use in anorectal disorders. ASF-1096 is a phase II product candidate that Cipher is investigating as a treatment for selected inflammatory skin disorders. Cipher acquired the global rights to the product in February 2015. Under this agreement, Cipher retains all rights to ASF-1096 for dermatological conditions.

ASF-1096 is the first dermatological agent selectively targeting the ß2-adrenoceptor of dermal inflammatory cells including keratinocytes and various infiltrating leukocytes. When applied topically, ASF-1096 penetrates through the stratum corneum and binds to ß2-adrenoceptors, leading to immunomodulatory effects by reducing inflammatory reactions mediated by CD4+ lymphocytes and other types of ß2-adrenoceptor presenting leukocytes. This results in a decrease of pro-inflammatory gene products such as IL-2, TNF-a, and IFN-?. ASF-1096 was granted Orphan Drug Status by the European Medicines Agency for the treatment of cutaneous forms of Lupus Erythematosus.

"Given its novel anti-inflammatory properties, we believe ASF-1096 has promise as a compound to treat a range of anorectal disorders, and we're pleased to partner with Edesa to move the clinical development forward for these indications while we remain focused on dermatology," said Shawn O'Brien, President & CEO of Cipher. "We will continue to pursue opportunities to monetize our commercial products and product candidates in regions and indications that are not on our strategic roadmap."

Dr. Michael Brooks, VP of Corporate Development at Edesa, added: "We are very excited to work with Cipher and to explore the utility of ASF-1096 in anorectal indications."

Specific terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

About Edesa Biotech Inc

Edesa Biotech Inc. (http://www.edesabiotech.com/) has several products currently in development that target dermatological and gastrointestinal disorders. The company's focus is on treating underserved areas in Dermatology and Gastroenterology.

About Cipher Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Cipher Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:CPHR; TSX:CPH) is a rapidly growing specialty pharmaceutical dermatology company with a diversified portfolio of commercial-stage products with the goal of becoming the most customer-centric dermatology company in North America.

Through multiple transactions, including the acquisition of Innocutis and its nine branded dermatology products, Cipher has built its U.S. commercial presence, expanded its Canadian dermatology franchise and broadened its pipeline. Cipher is well-capitalized to drive long-term, sustained earnings growth by leveraging its proven clinical development capabilities and efficient commercial execution. For more information, visit www.cipherpharma.com.

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