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MGI PHARMA CHEMOPROTECTIVE (MGI 136) PROGRAM REMAINS ON TRACK; COMPANY COMMENTS ON FDA ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEETING ON ETHYOL(R)

 MGI PHARMA CHEMOPROTECTIVE (MGI 136) PROGRAM REMAINS ON TRACK;
 COMPANY COMMENTS ON FDA ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEETING ON ETHYOL(R)
 MINNEAPOLIS, Feb. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- MGI Pharma, Inc. (NASDAQ: MOGN) held a conference call with analysts this morning to discuss MGI 136 in light of Friday's Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Advisory Committee Meeting on Ethyol, a drug developed by U.S. Bioscience. The committee declined to recommend approval for Ethyol, recommending instead that there be further study of the drug.
 Dr. Kenneth F. Tempero, MGI Pharma's CEO and chairman, said, "none of the comments made by the Advisory Committee cause me to be alarmed about developing a chemoprotective drug such as MGI 136. While the committee rejected the Ethyol New Drug Application (NDA), it did not reject the concept of chemoprotectives. The committee's recommendations and comments have reassured me that our approach to study design, requiring substantial patient populations for an NDA, is more in line with FDA expectations. While MGI 136 is still in clinical testing and therefore subject to all the risks associated with development stage products, we are confident that the design of our clinical studies is scientifically sound and will, therefore, continue its development until the targeted completion in 1993 or until there is a compelling reason -- either good or bad -- to stop the trials."
 MGI Pharma is currently conducting two double-blind, placebo controlled, Phase III clinical studies on MGI 136 to evaluate its ability to reduce the toxic effects of cisplatin and stimulate bone marrow. More than 200 patients have been enrolled to date. These studies are being conducted in over 70 centers across the United States.
 MGI Pharma's filing of an NDA for Salagen(TM), a drug that treats radiation-induced xerostomia, is imminent. In keeping with its established approach to drug development, the company conducted eight Phase I studies and two Phase III studies in which more than 350 subjects were treated at over 60 centers. In addition, the company has enrolled 264 patients in a long-term maintenance study from which the company is collecting additional safety data.
 MGI Pharma, Inc., acquires, develops and markets pharmaceuticals prescribed and recommended by physician specialists. The company currently sells DIDRONEL(R) I.V. Infusion and Oratect(TM) Gel and has a number of products in various stages of development.
 -0- 2/3/92
 /CONTACT: Lori Weiman of MGI Pharma, 612-939-4666/
 (MOGN) CO: MGI Pharma, Inc. ST: Minnesota IN: MTC SU:


DS -- MN003 -- 6040 02/03/92 09:35 EST
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Date:Feb 3, 1992
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