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CollaGenex Pharmaceuticals and Sirius Laboratories Join Forces to Market Products to U.S. Dermatologists.

Business Editors/Health/Medical Writers

NEWTOWN, Pa.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--March 20, 2003

Combined Products Address $250MM Potential Topical Acne & Rosacea

Markets and $125 Million Mid-Potency Topical Steroid Markets

CollaGenex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq:CGPI) and Sirius Laboratories, Inc. today announced that they have entered into agreements to jointly promote the AVAR(TM) (sodium sulfacetamide 10%, sulphur 5%) product line from Sirius and Pandel(R) (hydrocortisone probutate cream, 0.1%) from CollaGenex to U.S. dermatologists.

The partnership will leverage the combined sales and marketing infrastructures of CollaGenex and Sirius to improve both companies' abilities to reach key dermatologists and increase frequency of contact.

CollaGenex has a national sales force of 100 representatives calling on dermatologists; Sirius' specialty sales force has built strong relationships with dermatologists in major metropolitan areas of the eastern United States.

It is anticipated that the combined efforts of the two sales forces will significantly increase the opportunity to develop product awareness and accelerate the sales of both product lines.

"This partnership with Sirius Laboratories is an important step in executing our strategy to expand our portfolio of prescription dermatology products, and we are particularly excited about the opportunity to participate in the launch of the AVAR product line," noted Brian M. Gallagher, PhD, chairman, president and chief executive officer of CollaGenex. "The AVAR product line has some truly novel attributes that will benefit both dermatologists and their patients. In addition, we will accelerate the return on our investment in Pandel by increasing both sales reach and call frequency. We are confident that our association with Sirius will contribute to our profitability in 2003 and enhance our position as a provider of high-quality products with differentiating advantages for the treatment of acne and rosacea."

"Sirius is committed to developing a market leading position in the acne and rosacea market, and we believe that the launch of the unique AVAR product line will benefit significantly from CollaGenex' extensive sales infrastructure," noted Frank Pollard, president and chief executive officer of Sirius Laboratories. "In addition, by co-promoting Pandel, our own highly trained and focused sales representatives will benefit by being able to compete in a key dermatology market with a proprietary, differentiated mid-potency steroid product, adding not only to our bottom line but also to our presence as a supplier of therapeutically significant products to the dermatology market."

The AVAR product line was developed by Sirius Laboratories and introduced to the U.S. dermatology market in March 2003 through the Sirius sales force. The AVAR products include three unique, proprietary prescription formulations, AVAR Gel, AVAR Green and AVAR Cleanser, which are indicated for the topical control of acne vulgaris, rosacea and seborrheic dermatitis.

The rapidly growing market for prescription topical acne and rosacea products is currently estimated in excess of $250MM. Sirius and CollaGenex anticipate that the differentiating features of the AVAR product line will enable the combined efforts of the companies to capture significant market share over the next several years.

The AVAR products have several unique characteristics that differentiate them from similar products, including the following:

-- AVAR is the first line of aqueous-based emollient gel formulations of sodium sulfacetamide and sulphur. Patients prefer water-based gels, and the addition of emollients and lipids makes the formulation cosmetically elegant and suitable for any skin type and any climate.

-- The AVAR products utilize colloidal sulfur, the most potent form of sulfur available. AVAR combines multiple mechanisms to control acne and rosacea, thereby offering anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory and comedolytic/ keratolytic effects as well as reducing the population of the Demodex mite, an organism associated with the symptoms of rosacea.

-- AVAR Green is the first rosacea medication that helps immediately neutralize the appearance of erythema as it treats the underlying condition. AVAR Green is a sheer translucent emollient gel that takes advantage of the physics of color perception; when green light is added to red light, the brain perceives a more neutral flesh-tone.

All AVAR products have one or more filed patents pending covering various unique features of this line.

For full AVAR prescribing information, please call Sirius at 847-968-2424.

Pandel is a patented, mid-potency topical corticosteroid that is indicated for the relief of mild-to-moderate inflammatory disorders of the skin, such as atopic dermatitis and psoriasis. It is available in several sizes, including 15g, 45g and a unique 80g tube, which is particularly useful for frequent users.

It is non-halogenated and is delivered in a cosmetically elegant formulation offering once-a-day convenience. The branded mid-potency corticosteroid market is valued at approximately $125 million in the United States.

For full Pandel prescribing information, please call the Professional Affairs Department at CollaGenex at 888-339-5678.

CollaGenex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a specialty pharmaceutical company currently focused on providing innovative medical therapies to the dental and dermatology markets. Currently, the Company's 115-person professional dental pharmaceutical sales force markets Periostat(R), which is indicated as an adjunct to scaling and root planing for the treatment of adult periodontitis.

Periostat(R) is the first and only pharmaceutical to treat periodontal disease by inhibiting the enzymes that destroy periodontal support tissues, and by enhancing bone protein synthesis.

The sales force also promotes Vioxx(R), a Merck & Co. drug that CollaGenex co-promotes for the treatment of acute dental pain, Denavir(R), a Novartis Group prescription anti-viral medication for the treatment of cold sores, and Atridox(R), Atrisorb(R) and Atrisorb-D(R), Atrix Laboratories Inc.'s products for the treatment of adult periodontitis.

Research has shown that certain unique properties of the tetracyclines discovered during the development of Periostat may be applicable to other diseases involving inflammation and/or destruction of the body's connective tissues, including acne, rosacea, meibomianitis and cancer metastasis, among others.

CollaGenex is further evaluating Periostat, as well as the new IMPACS(R), to assess whether they are safe and effective in these applications. In addition, CollaGenex has licensed the Restoraderm(TM) technology, a unique, proprietary dermal drug delivery system, in order to develop a range of topical dermatological products with enhanced pharmacologic and cosmetic properties.

To receive additional information on the Company, please visit our Web site at www.collagenex.com, which does not form part of this press release.

Sirius Laboratories(R) is a rapidly growing specialty pharmaceutical company engaged in the development and marketing of novel prescription pharmaceutical products for the treatment of skin disorders.

Although the company has initially focused on acne and psoriasis therapies, other skin disorders addressed by products currently in the Company's development pipeline include eczema, and seborrheic keratoses.

Sirius launched its first product, Nicomide(TM) in July 2001 followed by the launch of Psoriatec(TM) in November and both Nicosyn(TM) and PsoriaCap(TM) in January 2002 and the AVAR line of three products in March 2003.

These seven products - all launched during the first twenty months of the company's existence as a marketing entity - give Sirius positions in two of the largest dermatology markets in the United States - acne and psoriasis.

More information is available at www.siriuslabs.com, which is not a part of this press release.

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Investors are cautioned that forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, which may affect the Company's business and prospects.

The Company's business of selling, marketing and developing pharmaceutical products is subject to a number of significant risks, including risks relating to the implementation of the Company's sales and marketing plans for Periostat(R), the outcome and consequences of the patent litigation against West-ward, other products that the Company markets, risks inherent in research and development activities, risks associated with conducting business in a highly regulated environment and uncertainty relating to clinical trials of products under development, all as discussed in the Company's periodic filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Periostat(R), Metastat(R), Dermostat(R), Nephrostat(R), Osteostat(R), Arthrostat(R), Rheumastat(R), Corneostat(R), Gingistat(R), IMPACS(R), PS20(TM), The Whole Mouth Treatment(R), Restoraderm(TM) and Dentaplex(R) are United States trademarks of CollaGenex Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Periostat(R), Nephrostat(R), Optistat(R), Xerostat(R) and IMPACS(TM) are European Community trademarks of CollaGenex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Periostat(R), Nephrostat(R), Optistat(R), Xerostat(R), IMPACS(R), Dentaplex(R), Restoraderm(R), Dermastat(R), Periocycline(R), Periostatus(R) and Periostan(R) are United Kingdom trademarks of our wholly owned subsidiary, CollaGenex International Limited.

CollaGenex(R), PS20(R), "C" Logo(R) and The Whole Mouth Treatment(R) are European Community and United Kingdom trademarks of CollaGenex International Limited. Periocycline(TM) and Periostan(TM) are European Community Trademarks of CollaGenex International Limited.

All other trade names, trademarks or service marks are the property of their respective owners and are not the property of CollaGenex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. or any of our subsidiaries.

Pandel(R) is a trademark of Taisho Pharmaceuticals.

VIOXX(R) is a trademark of Merck & Co., Inc.

Atridox(R), Atrisorb(R) and Atrisorb-D(R) are trademarks of Atrix Laboratories, Inc.

Denavir(R) is a trademark of the Novartis Group, Inc.

Nicomide(R), Psoriatec(TM), Nicosyn(TM) and PsoriaCap(TM) and AVAR(TM) are trademarks of Sirius Laboratories, Inc. gs (loss) bef
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Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 20, 2003
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