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Study: Clazosentan Reduces Severity of Post-Subarachnoid Hemorrhage

ALLSCHWIL and BASEL, Switzerland, Aug. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- AXOVAN AG, the Swiss drug discovery and development company, announced today positive results from a Phase II European clinical study of clazosentan, a specific endothelin A (ETA) antagonist, for treatment of vasospasm subsequent to subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). SAH is a bleeding event in the brain usually following the rupture of an aneurysm.

Conducted in Germany, the multi-center, double-blind, placebo-controlled and randomized study shows that clazosentan is safe and well-tolerated. In addition, the results are indicative of a substantial effect of the drug in reducing the incidence and severity of post-SAH vasospasm.

"These promising results confirm that clazosentan, an endothelin receptor antagonist that has been optimally designed for this specific indication, constitutes today the only concrete hope to significantly address the cerebral vasospasm, which is a devastating complication of SAH," comments Dr. Volker Breu, Head of Clinical Development at AXOVAN.

Around 80,000 patients every year are affected by SAH in Europe and US alone. It is estimated that approximately half of the patients surviving the hemorrhagic event will experience spasm of the brain blood vessels within a few days. This spasm is the leading cause of additional disability and death. Today, there is no satisfactory treatment available to prevent or treat this major complication of SAH.

"AXOVAN as a team has shown outstanding capability to design, drive and complete within schedule, a challenging and complex clinical trial. This dedication to excellence, along with the present results, makes us very optimistic about the future of our company," adds Dr. Olivier Valdenaire, CEO of AXOVAN.

Clazosentan was licensed in March 2002 from Roche. It entered the Phase II study in October 2002. Further clinical studies are being planned.

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