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AFFYMAX UNVEILS NEW DRUG DISCOVERY TECHNOLOGY; TECHNOLOGY PUBLISHED IN NOV. 15 ISSUE OF THE PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES

 AMSTERDAM, The Netherlands, Nov. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Affymax N.V. (NASDAQ: AFMXF) announced today the first scientific publication describing a new technology for generating and screening large collections of chemical compounds. This proprietary technology, called Encoded Synthetic Libraries (ESL(TM)), makes it possible to automate the synthesis and screening of billions of distinct chemical compounds on the surface of microscopic beads. ESL can be applied toward the creation of large numbers of different classes of compounds including peptides, oligonucleotides and small molecule chemical compounds.
 The ESL technology adds to Affymax's current portfolio of drug discovery technologies which includes Recombinant Peptide Diversity (RPD), a series of technologies for generating billions of peptides on bacteriophage; and Very Large Scale Immobilized Polymer Synthesis (VLSIPS(TM)), an adaptation of semiconductor technology for creating compounds on the surface of a microchip. ESL is an important addition to Affymax's portfolio of technologies in that it can be applied to the synthesis of very large numbers of non-peptide based compounds, significantly increasing the diversity of compounds which can be accessed in the company's drug discovery programs.
 The publication describing Affymax's ESL technology appears in the Nov. 15 issue of the "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences." The paper, entitled "Generation and Screening of an Oligonucleotide- Encoded Synthetic Peptide Library," describes the application of the technology in the synthesis and successful screening of a collection of over half a million peptide molecules on beads 10 microns in diameter.
 The power of the ESL technology comes from the ability to synthesize small amounts of compounds using both unnatural and natural chemical building blocks. A "tag" is attached to each bead encoding the structural identity of the chemical compound on that bead. Standard laboratory instrumentation (a Fluorescence Activated Cell Sorter) can be used to rapidly isolate individual beads which contain molecules with high affinity for specific drug targets. The tags on the bead serve as a recipe to identify the compound that has been synthesized on a particular bead.
 "We are pleased to add ESL(TM) to our growing portfolio of novel drug discovery technologies," stated Gordon Ringold, Ph.D., president, Affymax Research Institute. "ESL is an incredibly powerful drug discovery tool in that it allows the creation of millions of natural and synthetic compounds, in a miniaturized, automated format."
 Affymax is developing new technologies to accelerate the pace of drug discovery. Affymax is applying these technologies across a broad range of diseases to discover and develop products independently as well as in collaboration with established pharmaceutical companies. The majority of the company's research and development activities are performed by its wholly-owned subsidiary, Affymax Research Institute, located in Palo Alto and Santa Clara, Calif. The company is also pursuing opportunities in diagnostics through its subsidiary, Affymetrix.
 -0- 11/15/93
 /CONTACT: Diana E. Kapp of Affymax, 415-496-2379/
 (AFMXF)


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Date:Nov 15, 1993
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