TAP Pharmaceutical Products Inc. Foundation Establishes TAP Research Endowment Fund

Published: May 22, 2006

OAK BROOK, Ill., May 22 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) Foundation announced the establishment of the TAP Research Endowment Fund. The endowment, which will be funded over the next three years by a grant from TAP Pharmaceutical Products Inc., Lake Forest, IL, provides a permanent resource for funding of gastrointestinal endoscopic research designed to answer important questions and improve the quality and effectiveness of clinical endoscopic services.

ASGE - A Leader in GI Research

ASGE has an impressive track record over the past thirty years providing funds that have allowed investigators to improve the diagnostic and therapeutic value and impact of GI endoscopy. ASGE applauds TAP for its foresight and leadership in the GI endoscopic research arena.

"ASGE and the Foundation are most grateful to TAP for its support of GI endoscopic research. TAP's commitment will make a significant difference in the practice of GI endoscopy and the lives and health of patients for years to come," said Francis J. Tedesco, MD, FASGE, Chair of the ASGE Foundation.

"The ASGE provides valuable training and education for physicians who practice endoscopy," said Nancy Joseph-Ridge, MD, vice president of research and development at TAP. "We believe that the research endowment will ultimately help patients who will benefit from the organization's GI management and prevention research."

ASGE and ASGE Foundation-funded research studies have played key roles in the development, implementation, and testing of a variety of gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopic procedures and techniques that have greatly benefited patients who suffer from digestive diseases and disorders. Highly focused and practical -- investigations are usually completed in a relatively short time and the results are quickly translated into significant improvements in clinical practice. The TAP Research Endowment Fund will enhance ASGE's ability to fund studies and expand future endoscopic research opportunities and needs such as:

-- Colorectal Cancer - Better defining risk factors for colorectal cancer and polyps and improving the safety, comfort and accuracy of colonoscopy. Widespread use of high-quality colonoscopy is largely credited for the recent decline in colorectal cancer incidence and mortality in the U.S. -- GI bleeding - Improve endoscopic diagnosis and treatment of life- threatening gastrointestinal bleeding. Increasingly, potentially fatal hemorrhage from ulcers, varicies, vascular lesions, and other mucosal disorders are quickly definitively controlled using a single endoscopic exam coupled with the use of newly developed methods to control bleeding, obviating the need to do surgery on many high-risk patients. -- EUS - Further refinement of endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) - ultrasound delivered through an endoscope placed in different parts of the alimentary tract providing accurate diagnosis and staging of both GI cancers (esophagus, stomach, pancreas, colon and rectum) and non-GI cancers located in the thorax and abdomen. These procedures help ensure the proper use and timing of surgery for patients with these common malignancies. -- ERCP - Further improve the safety and quality of endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) for the treatment of biliary and pancreatic disease. These developments have benefited countless numbers of patients with complicated gall stone disease, pancreatitis, duct strictures, and related infections - again obviating the need to do more invasive and risky surgery in most patients. -- Development and testing of endoscopic bariatric procedures for treating patients with life-shortening morbid obesity. -- Refinement and testing of emerging endoscopic techniques for the non- surgical treatment of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). -- Development and testing of endoscopic techniques that use energy forms other than visible light to examine tissue and assess disease. -- Design of large outcome studies that are statistically able to show that each endoscopic procedure that clinicians now recommend improves patient outcomes. The Grant Process

Eligibility for the TAP Research Awards will be subject to the overall grant policies of ASGE and the ASGE Foundation. The grant amounts, while subject to review, will be between $25,000 and $50,000 annually. Applications for grants from the Fund will be evaluated by the ASGE Research Committee and will be awarded based on qualifications and expertise. Grants will be available from the TAP Research Endowment Fund beginning in early 2007. For more information, please visit http://www.asge.org/nspages/research/grant- app.cfm or send an e-mail to grants@asge.org .

The American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE), founded in 1941, is the preeminent professional organization dedicated to advancing the practice of endoscopy. ASGE, with more than 9,000 physician members worldwide, promotes the highest standards for endoscopic training and practice, fosters endoscopic research, recognizes distinguished contributions to Endoscopy, and is the foremost resource for endoscopic education.

About ASGE: http://www.asge.org 630-573-0600 Patient Information: http://www.askasge.org 866-305-ASGE

Contact: P. Joanne Ray, CFRE

630/570-5602 pjray@asge.org

American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy

CONTACT: P. Joanne Ray, CFRE of American Society for GastrointestinalEndoscopy, +1-630-570-5602, pjray@asge.org

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