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Suplasyn Pharmacoeconomic Study Demonstrates Reduced Pain, Cost-Effectiveness in Osteoarthritis of the Knee

BELLEVILLE, Ontario, June 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Bioniche Life Sciences Inc. (TSX: BNC), a fully-integrated, leading Canadian human and animal health biopharmaceutical company, presented final results of a French Pharmacoeconomic study into the Bioniche-developed proprietary product Suplasyn® for the treatment of osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee at the European League Against Rheumatism Conference in Berlin, Germany on Friday. In addition, two presentations were made describing the effectiveness of Suplasyn® in the treatment of patients with OA.

About the Pharmacoeconomic Study

Dr. Bernard Mazieres, Study Coordinator, presented the results of an observational, naturalistic, open-label study comparing clinical improvement, quality of life, and medical costs in patients with OA of the knee three months before and six months after the intra-articular injection of Suplasyn®, a hyaluronic acid-based product. The study was coordinated by Dr. Mazieres, in collaboration with Drs. Herve Bard and Claude LePen, and was sponsored by Bioniche Pharma Group Ltd. and Chiesi France. Dr. Mazieres is Chief of the Department of Rheumatology at the Rangueil University Hospital and Professor of Rheumatology at University Paul Sabatier in Toulouse, France. Dr. Bard is a Consultant in Rheumatology in the Orthopaedics Department of the Georges Pompidou European Hospital in Paris, France and Associate Professor at the Faculty of Medicine, Paris VII University. Dr. Le Pen is Health Economy Professor at EURIsCO, LEGOS, Paris IX University -- Dauphine.

Pharmacoeconomic Study Results

"Three-hundred and ten patients participated in this study," said Dr. Bard, "most of whom had moderate osteoarthritis of the knee. We are pleased to report that, using both the Lequesne and WOMAC indices, our study showed a significant reduction in pain and improved function levels as early as the third month, which were maintained at six months. We also saw an improvement in the physical health and mental well-being of the patients. Analgesic consumption and Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory (NSAID) consumption decreased significantly after Suplasyn® treatment. Suplasyn® led to an absolute decrease in the total median of medical and non-medical costs per patient of approximately 30%. The differences reported in the study were statistically significant."

"The results of this study are very encouraging," said Albert Beraldo, President & CEO, Bioniche Pharma Group. "They confirm that Suplasyn® is a very effective treatment for patients with osteoarthritis of the knee, providing them pain reduction and an improved quality of life at a significantly lower cost."

About the Osteoarthritis Study

Dr. Robert Petrella, Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Western Ontario and Medical Director at the Canadian Centre for Activity and Aging in London, Ontario described the latest findings from two ongoing studies using Suplasyn®, to treat osteoarthritis of the knee. Dr. Petrella presented long-term outcomes from a naturalistic practice experience, as well as the preliminary findings of a data mining project involving primary care practitioners in Southwestern Ontario.

Osteoarthritis Study Results

Dr. Petrella showed that treatment of the osteoarthritic knee with HA (Suplasyn®) resulted in improved clinical outcomes at rest and walking pain; high treatment satisfaction; and an excellent product safety profile. These results were obtained in three repeated series of three Suplasyn® treatments in 537 patients representing 4,833 intra-articular injections.

"This research provides preliminary evidence for possible disease-modifying activity in osteoarthritis, as well as data on the long-term benefits of Suplasyn® among typical patients. This is a very unique cohort of patients in terms number of patients, experience in HA treatment with Suplasyn®, and duration of the follow-up," said Dr. Petrella.

"These studies, conducted by respected clinicians, are providing additional evidence of the efficacy of Suplasyn® in the treatment of patients with osteoarthritis," said Graeme McRae, President & CEO of Bioniche Life Sciences Inc. "Our research and development programs have led to the development of proprietary technologies that are scientifically based and efficacious in application. These studies are further examples of the benefits of our strategic investment in research and development, which is fully integrated with manufacturing processes that consistently meet regulatory standards."

About Suplasyn®

Suplasyn® is a sterile, sodium hyaluronate solution injected into synovial joints such as the knee to replace or augment synovial fluid, the naturally occurring lubricant in the joint. Suplasyn® reduces joint pain and increases mobility. The product is manufactured at Bioniche facilities in Inverin, Co. Galway, Ireland.

About Bioniche Pharma Group

Bioniche Pharma Group is a speciality pharmaceutical company involved in the development, manufacturing, and marketing of sterile injectable products and other pharmaceuticals for human health. Its sterile injectable products are primarily sold in the United States directly or through strategic alliances with other pharmaceutical companies. It holds the rights to Bioniche's proprietary product -- Suplasyn®, which has become a market leader in Europe.

Source: Bioniche Life Sciences Inc.

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