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NORTHFIELD LABS COMPLETES KEY STAGE OF BLOOD SUBSTITUTE TRIALS; FIRM EXPECTS PATIENT TESTING TO BEGIN IN SUMMER

 SAN DIEGO, March 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Northfield Laboratories Inc., the leading organization in blood substitute research, will report at a scientific hearing today that it has successfully completed clinical trials on healthy volunteers for Northfield's hemoglobin-based, red-cell substitute.
 The company is scheduled to report at the Fifth International Symposium on Blood Substitutes today that healthy volunteers were infused with an average dose equal to 50 grams of hemoglobin -- and a peak dosage equivalent of 63 grams -- without side effect, in the latest series of tests. Earlier this year, the company had reported a peak dosage of 44 grams of its hemoglobin-based, red-cell substitute, which is equal to one transfusion unit of red cells.
 Richard DeWoskin, chairman and chief executive officer of the Evanston, Ill.-based company, indicated today that the firm plans to begin testing with patients -- persons for whom blood loss is a medical issue -- in U.S. hospitals this summer.
 "We are very excited about reaching this milestone," DeWoskin said. "We have infused more volunteers and conducted more tests than any other research effort, and we also have reached a safe dosage level several times as high as any competitor has reported."
 The search for a blood substitute -- more correctly defined as a hemoglobin-based, oxygen carrier -- has captured the attention of the scientific and medical communities for decades, and the Northfield Laboratories scientific effort itself spans 23 years. Although blood is considered a "natural" product, its shortcomings include disease transmission, typing requirements and a shelf life of 4-6 weeks.
 The red cell substitute developed by Northfield Laboratories is believed to eliminate these shortcomings. The production process -- which isolates and polymerizes hemoglobin molecules -- destroys both viruses and bacteria. In addition, the solution does not need to be typed and has a shelf life in excess of one year, according to the company.
 DeWoskin said the firm is in negotiations with a few U.S. research hospitals that are possible sites for patient tests. Now that tests on healthy volunteers have been completed, a larger grouping of patients -- persons for whom blood replacement is an immediate issue -- is the next focus of research.
 "We believe we will have all the necessary protocols established and that patient testing will begin this summer," DeWoskin said.
 Northfield Laboratories Inc., based in Evanston, Ill., is a research organization seeking to develop a hemoglobin-based blood substitute. The firm is privately held.
 -0- 3/19/93
 /CONTACT: Richard DeWoskin, chairman and chief executive officer of Northfield Laboratories, 708-864-3500; or Michael Rosenbaum or Margie Baigh of the Financial Relations Board, 312-266-7800, for Northfield Laboratories/


CO: Northfield Laboratories Inc. ST: Illinois, California IN: MTC SU:

GK -- NY020 -- 7840 03/19/93 10:58 EST
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Date:Mar 19, 1993
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