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ULCER CURE LINKED TO TREATMENT OF COMMON BACTERIUM -- KEY TOPIC AT NATIONAL DIGESTIVE DISEASE WEEK

 SAN DIEGO, May 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Surgeons, gastroenterologists and scientists attending a national meeting in Boston, May 15-21, will discuss research that shows treatment of a common bacterium can cure ulcers, which afflict one in 10 Americans during their lifetime. At the meeting, known as Digestive Disease Week, healthcare professionals and scientists will look at recent research that shows the underlying cause of most ulcers is a bacterium, Helicobacter pylori, known as H. pylori -- not excess acid production from stress as commonly believed.
 Doctors can now use a rapid in-office test called QuickVue(TM), that can be performed in minutes without instrumentation, to determine if their patients have been exposed to the H. pylori bacterium. The test was developed by QUIDEL Corp., a leading developer and marketer of rapid diagnostic tests. The inexpensive, easily administered test -- which gives results in seven minutes -- can be administered by the patient's primary care physician.
 If the test comes up positive, the doctor can immediately prescribe antibiotic therapy which, according to medical experts, is effective in killing the bacteria and alleviating the patient's symptoms within days. If the test is negative and stomach problems persist, the physician can recommend a specialist for further evaluation.
 Dr. Barry Marshall, professor of gastroenterology at the University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville, was the first to identify H. pylori as a likely cause of ulcers. Recently, Dr. David Y. Graham at Baylor College of Medicine also found that ulcers may actually be caused by this bacterium.
 In their research, the Baylor team measured the effect of antibiotics on two groups of patients with histories of ulcer disease who were diagnosed positive for H. pylori. Group one received conventional prescription anti-ulcer medication designed to reduce the production of stomach acid. Group two received antibiotics, in addition to the same anti-ulcer medication, to kill the H. pylori that was infecting their stomachs.
 Low Recurrence Rate With Antibiotics
 After following the progress of both groups for two years, the study concluded that if H. pylori is eradicated from the stomach lining through antibiotic treatment, most chronic sufferers will not have their ulcers recur. In fact, only about 10 percent of those receiving antibiotic therapy had their ulcers recur within the study period compared to a recurrence rate of nearly 75 percent receiving anti-ulcer medication alone.
 Similar findings have been reported at Stanford and other universities. News of these experiments has resulted in growing support from the medical community as doctors are treating an increasing number of ulcer patients for H. pylori.
 During a postgraduate course at the Boston meeting, on Saturday, May 15, Marshall discussed diagnostic techniques and treatment strategies for H. pylori and Graham will give an opinion on how treatment of the infection influences the natural history of some "acid-peptic" disorders. Marshall and Graham will each also co-chair sessions on H. pylori during the American Gastroenterological Association scientific annual meeting, today (Monday, May 17), and Wednesday, May 19, respectively.
 QUIDEL, a biotechnology company based in San Diego, was first to introduce a rapid test for H. pylori in the doctor's office. "Two years ago, QUIDEL recognized the pioneering medical research by Dr. Marshall and Dr. Graham by developing a rapid, easy-to-use test," said Scott L. Glenn, chairman and chief executive officer.
 "The fact that bacteria may cause stomach ulcers is clearly a major advancement in our understanding of ulcers and represents great news for those who suffer from this disease," Glenn continued. "Chronic use of medication may no longer be necessary to control their ulcers. We urge patients to ask their doctors if this type of treatment might be appropriate for them."
 QUIDEL believes the treatment to eradicate H. pylori is cost- effective, in addition to improving patient health. One year of prescription anti-ulcer medication can cost more than $700, while treatment for H. pylori costs less than $35. Additionally, treatment for H. pylori can be done by a general practitioner, saving the patient the expense of a visit to a specialist.
 QUIDEL Corp. develops, manufactures and markets rapid immunodiagnostic products that provide simple, accurate and cost- effective diagnoses in the areas of human fertility, infectious diseases, allergy and autoimmune disorders. These tests are designed for use in the physician's office, clinical laboratory and home testing markets.
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 /CONTACT: Scott L. Glenn, chairman and CEO, 619-552-7900, or Mark Francois, manager of investor relations, 619-552-7931, both of QUIDEL; or Richard Stern of Stern & Co., 212-688-7878, for QUIDEL/


CO: QUIDEL Corp. ST: California IN: MTC SU: PDT

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Date:May 17, 1993
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