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LILLY AND NEXAGEN ENTER JOINT RESEARCH PROGRAM

 LILLY AND NEXAGEN ENTER JOINT RESEARCH PROGRAM
 BOULDER, Colo., Sept. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- NeXagen Inc., announced


the signing of a three-year renewable collaborative agreement with Eli Lilly and Co. to develop pharmaceutical products directed against two molecular targets involved in certain cardiovascular and inflammatory disorders.
 In addition to providing research funding, Lilly has made an equity investment for a minority position in NeXagen. NeXagen will receive royalties on the sale of products resulting from the collaboration, as well as milestone payments as these drugs are developed.
 Under the agreement, NeXagen will utilize its proprietary repertoire chemistry technology, SELEX (Systematic Evolution of Ligands by EXponential enrichment), to locate high-affinity nucleic acid ligands against the disease targets. The companies will then collaborate to develop pharmaceutical agents from these ligands.
 "This agreement is very significant for NeXagen," said Patrick J. Mahaffy, NeXagen's president and chief executive officer. "We are pleased that Lilly shares our belief in the scientific and commercial potential of SELEX and nucleic acid based pharmaceuticals. Through their funding commitment, Lilly has validated our leadership position in repertoire chemistry technology. Our expertise in drug discovery, and their outstanding research and development capabilities, should lead to the development of significant therapeutic products."
 SELEX, discovered at the University of Colorado at Boulder, is based on more than 20 years of nucleic acid research by Larry Gold, Ph.D, a founder of NeXagen and its director of research. Utilizing SELEX, NeXagen can rapidly isolate the nucleic acid sequence which binds most tightly and uniquely to a
specific target, and which does not bind elsewhere. NeXagen chemists then utilize proprietary nucleotide and nucleoside chemistry to modify the ligands for the development of therapeutics. SELEX's ability to rapidly isolate a unique ligand from a pool as large as 1,018 possible ligands represents a significant advantage over more traditional forms of drug discovery.
 NeXagen has exclusive license to existing SELEX patent applications from the University of Colorado, as well as to future improvements to SELEX and to compounds discovered at the University utilizing the drug discovery technology.
 NeXagen was founded in April 1991 by Larry Gold, Ph.D., chairman of the Department of Molecular, Developmental, and Cellular Biology at the University of Colorado and the venture capital firm of E.M. Warburg, Pincus and Co.
 Eli Lilly and Co. is a global research-based corporation that develops, manufactures, and markets pharmaceuticals, medical instrument and diagnostic products and animal health products.
 -0- 9/21/92
 /CONTACT: Patrick J. Mahaffy of NeXagen Inc., 303-444-5893; or Mark J. Brand of Pondel Parsons & Wilkinson, 310-207-9300/ CO: NeXagen Inc.; Eli Lilly and Co. ST: Colorado IN: MTC SU: JVN


EH -- LA009 -- 1687 09/21/92 12:44 EDT
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Date:Sep 21, 1992
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