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 MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Oct. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Scios Nova Inc. (NASDAQ: SCIO) today announced the formation of Guilford PharmaceuticalsInc. The new company, based in Baltimore, Md., is focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of proprietary pharmaceutical products for the diagnosis and treatment of neurological, neurosurgical and psychiatric diseases.
 "Guilford combines an exciting recently-discovered technology related to nitric oxide's role in central nervous system (CNS) disorders with more advanced programs to diagnose and treat significant neurological disorders, such as Parkinson's disease, and to treat primary brain cancer," said Richard L. Casey, Scios Nova chairman and chief executive officer. "By forming a new company with Scios Nova's CNS products and research, we believe we can maximize the value of these technologies. With a product nearing the commercialization stage, a product in Phase II clinical studies, another poised to enter the clinic and a leading-edge research program, Guilford is well positioned to become a leading neuroscience company."
 Guilford's research and product development efforts span four areas. The GLIADEL(R) implant, a biodegradable polymer containing the cancer chemotherapy agent carmustine (BCNU), is being developed as a treatment for primary brain cancer. Phase III clinical studies have been completed and Guilford plans to seek Food and Drug Administration (FDA) marketing approval for the GLIADEL implant. RTI-55 for the diagnosis and monitoring of Parkinson's disease is in Phase II clinical studies under a Sponsor-Investigator's IND (investigational new drug).
 A glutamate receptor antagonist for the treatment of status epilepticus, a form of epilepsy, is in preclinical development, and nitric oxide (NO) synthase blockers for the treatment of stroke are in research.
 Guilford was formed jointly by Scios Nova, Solomon H. Snyder, M.D. and Craig R. Smith, M.D. Snyder is director of the Department of Neuroscience and distinguished service professor of Neuroscience, Pharmacology and Molecular Sciences and Psychiatry at The Johns Hopkins University. Snyder, who serves as chairman of Guilford's Scientific Advisory Board, has attained an international reputation in the field of neuroscience and was responsible for the breakthrough discovery of opiate receptors and their relationship to drug addiction, pain and emotion. More recently, Snyder made significant discoveries on nitric oxide's role as a neuro transmitter and its association with the brain damage caused by stroke. Snyder's work is the basis for Guilford's NO synthase inhibition research effort.
 "The research goal of Guilford is to develop completely new classes of drugs that act potently and selectively upon specific neurotransmitter systems in the brain," said Snyder. "We believe that our understanding of these systems can lead to the discovery of new drugs with greater efficacy and fewer side effects than current treatments."
 Smith is president and chief executive officer of Guilford. Prior to joining Guilford, Smith was senior vice president for business and market development at Centocor Inc. Smith joined Centocor in 1988 as vice president of clinical research after serving on the faculty of the Department of Medicine at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine for 13 years.
 "Guilford represents an outstanding opportunity to build a profitable company based on late-stage products and innovative technologies," said Smith. "Guilford has an unusually strong patent position for a start-up biopharmaceutical company, and already has two products in clinical development. Our initial focus is on seeking marketing approval for the GLIADEL implant and advancing RTI-55 through clinical development. We also plan to enter clinical trials with a competitive glutamate receptor antagonist and to select a NO synthase inhibitor to move forward into development."
 According to Smith, "Our products meet substantial unmet medical needs for a diagnostic test for Parkinson's disease and treatments for brain cancer, severe epilepsy and stroke. We expect these products to be cost effective in the rapidly evolving medical marketplace."
 Guilford's initial funding is through a $2.5 million investment by Scios Nova. Scios Nova holds a majority ownership in the company.
 Products in Development
 Guilford's most advanced product is the GLIADEL implant, a surgically implantable polymer wafer containing the cancer chemotherapeutic carmustine (BCNU). The GLIADEL implant has demonstrated prolonged survival in Phase III clinical studies and Guilford plans to seek FDA marketing approval. There are an estimated 17,500 cases of primary brain cancer annually in the United States. Currently there is no effective treatment for this form of cancer and average survival is less than two years.
 Guilford's dopamine imaging agent, RTI-55, is being licensed from the Research Triangle Institute. Preliminary human studies have shown it to be a promising Parkinson's diagnostic agent when used in conjunction with SPECT scanning. Parkinson's disease affects more than 600,000 people in the United States. An additional three to five million patients suffer from tremor unrelated to Parkinson's. Guilford is developing an agent which may be used to diagnose Parkinson's disease in its early stages, distinguishing the disease from other forms of tremor and to monitor disease progression in Parkinson's patients.
 Another Guilford product is a competitive glutamate receptor antagonist, NPC 17742, which may be used to treat epilepsy as well as stroke and head trauma. Preclinical studies in several animal models indicate the potential of NPC-17742 as a treatment for status epilepticus and serial seizures. NPC-17742 has also bee shown in animal models to prevent tolerance to and physical dependence on morphine and other opiates, which may facilitate the use of morphine to treat pain in cancer patients.
 Guilford is also developing agents that inhibit the synthesis of nitric oxide. Research has shown that NO may be responsible for brain damage associated with stroke. By blocking the synthesis of NO in neurons, researchers hope to prevent a substantial portion of the neuronal damage following events such as stroke or head trauma. An estimated 500,000 patients per year in the United States suffer from stroke and the number of cases is expected to increase as the population ages. Guilford is licensing the NO synthase inhibitor technology from The Johns Hopkins University.
 Scios Nova is a biopharmaceutical company engaged in the discovery, development and commercialization of novel human therapeutics. Scios Nova focuses its efforts in four areas: inflammation, metabolic disorders, cardio-renal disease, and tissue repair. The company's drug discovery encompasses both biotechnology techniques and small molecule design to develop new biopharmaceutical products. Scios Nova develops and commercializes products on a proprietary basis and in collaboration with established pharmaceutical companies.
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 /CONTACT: Kira Bacon of Scios Nova Inc., 415-940-6629; or Craig Smith of Guilford Pharmaceuticals, 410-631-6302/

CO: Scios Nova Inc. ST: California IN: MTC SU:

LH-SG -- SJ011 -- 8499 10/04/93 16:07 EDT
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Date:Oct 4, 1993

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