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VIRAZOLE NOW AVAILABLE FOR A NEW USE -- IN MECHANICALLY VENTILATED INFANTS

 COSTA MESA, Calif., Feb. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- The antiviral Virazole, used to treat hospitalized infants with severe lower respiratory tract infections due to respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), is now available for an expanded indication for RSV patients who also require mechanical ventilation, SPI Pharmaceuticals Inc. (AMEX: SPI) announced today.
 Aerosolized Virazole has been available in the United States since 1986 for treatment of hospitalized infants with severe lower respiratory tract infections due to RSV. Virazole is the only commercially available drug for this highly contagious disease, resulting in the hospitalization of an estimated 100,000 children annually in the United States. The patent to Virazole is held by Viratek Inc. (AMEX: VRA, VRAE), which receives royalties on its sales by SPI.
 Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine investigating aerosolized Virazole recently demonstrated significant reduction in morbidity among mechanically ventilated infants hospitalized because of severe lower respiratory tract RSV infection. Results of their study were published in the July 4, 1991, issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
 The new indication for Virazole became effective Feb. 8, 1993.
 Virazole is marketed by SPI in 22 nations worldwide to treat RSV in hospitalized infants. SPI manufactures, markets and distributes 600 prescription and non-prescription pharmaceuticals in more than 60 countries, including North and Latin America, Western and Eastern Europe and the Far East.
 -0- 2/12/93
 /CONTACT: Paul Knopick of SPI Pharmaceuticals, 714-545-0100, ext. 2465/
 (SPI VRA VRAE)


CO: SPI Pharmaceuticals ST: California IN: MTC SU:

LS-JB -- LA004 -- 6017 02/12/93 08:01 EST
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Date:Feb 12, 1993
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