Medivir licenses MIV-150 to Population Council

Huddinge, SWEDEN

HUDDINGE, Sweden, July 30, 2003 (PRIMEZONE) -- MIV-150 has been outlicensed to Population Council in New York for usein a microbicide intended to prevent HIV transmission. The PopulationCouncil has previously developed Carraguard, a vaginal formulation(microbicide) which is now in clinical evaluation among women in Africawith the hope that it will decrease the risk of HIV infection andprevent other sexually transmitted diseases. Laboratory experimentsindicate that the addition of MIV-150 to this vaginal formulation couldsubstantially increase the efficacy of the formulation in preventing HIVtransmission.

MIV-150 is a non nucleoside inhibitor of HIV polymerase and waspreviously outlicensed to Chiron Corporation where it was evaluated inphase I studies. These suggested that a considerable effort would benecessary to formulate MIV-150 in order to achieve a good oralbioavailability and MIV-150 was returned to Medivir. The new use in avaginal microbicide is not dependent on oral bioavailability butreflects the efficient binding of MIV-150 to the polymerase in the HIVparticle, thus ensuring inactivation of the virus.

The spread of HIV is an enormous problem in Africa and several other parts of the world. Extensive trials with vaccines have so far not been successful. An efficient vaginal microbicide preventing HIV transmission could be an important possibility for women in all countries to protect themselves against HIV.

The Population Council, which is a nonprofit organization, will be responsible for the development and funding of the product. Medivir gives free access to the use of MIV-150 in the vaginal microbicide in developing countries. When used in other countries Medivir has a right to income and Medivir retains the right to the Nordic market.

The Medivir Group

Medivir is an innovative, specialist research corporation that develops new pharmaceutical compounds based on proteases and polymerases as target enzymes. The company is located in Huddinge, Sweden and Cambridge, UK.

The group comprised Medivir AB, the subsidiaries Medivir UK Ltd. and the CCS group until 1 July 2003, after this date the CCS group is owned by Segulah II L.P.

Medivir has been quoted on the Stockholm Stock Exchange since 1996 and on the Attract40 list since 1 July 2003.

Medivir's research portfolio includes projects against HIV, jaundice, shingles, cold sores, osteoporosis, RA (rheumatoid arthritis), asthma and MS (multiple sclerosis).

Medivir has four projects in clinical development phases, two of which are entering phase III after completing phase II. One project is in phase I and one is in phase II.

In the first stage of preclinical pharmaceutical discovery, Medivir has some ten activities in explorative activities; the second, lead identification, encompasses three projects. The third stage, optimization, has one project, and two projects entering this phase. One project-MV026048-is in preclinical development, the stage closest to clinical development.

For additional information on Medivir, please see:

Medivir Enquiries

Rein Piir, CFO/VP IR, Medivir +46 708 53 7292

Bo Oberg, VP R&D Strategic Planning, Medivir +46 708 98 6440

The Population Council

The Population Council is an international, nonprofit institution that conducts research on three fronts: biomedical, social science, and public health. This research - and the information it produces - helps change the way people think about problems related to reproductive health and population growth. The Council's research makes a difference in people's lives. The Population Council has developed the three major reversible contraceptives; Copper IUDs, Norplant(R) and Mirena(R).

For additional information on Population Council, please see;

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