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Covance Purchases Equity Stake in Caprion Proteomics

- New Biomarker VP Appointed

- BiomarkerCenter of Excellence Established in Greenfield, Indiana

PRINCETON, N.J.,Dec. 16/PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Covance Inc. (NYSE: CVD), a leading provider of drug development services, announced today that it has purchased a minority equity stake in Caprion Proteomics, the leading provider of proteomics-based services to the pharmaceutical industry, to further enhance its biomarker service offerings to clients.

Pursuant to terms of the agreement, Covance will serve as the exclusive contract research organization distributor of Caprion's proteomic biomarker services. In addition, Caprion will serve as Covance's exclusive proteomic discovery provider. Through this alliance, Covance and Caprion will offer pharmaceutical and biotechnology drug development customers a distinctive, innovative, and integrated biomarker solution.

Covance also announced today that it has hired a new vice president to lead its Biomarker Team and that it plans to establish a Biomarker Center of Excellence at its Greenfield, Indiana campus.

These strategic moves will enable Covance to further capitalize on the emerging high-growth service market in biomarker discovery, verification, validation, and deployment across the drug development continuum -- from early proof of concept through late-stage clinical trials and post-marketing surveillance. Currently, pharmaceutical companies are adopting biomarker strategies for the vast majority of new drug candidates, and it is predicted that within the next ten years biomarkers will be a standard aspect of drug development for any novel candidate. In fact, the U.S. FDA's 2006 Critical Path Initiative listed biomarkers as one of the two areas with the greatest impact on modernizing drug development and approval.

"We are very pleased to be adding Caprion's solid scientific capabilities and leading biomarker technology platform to Covance's line up," said Deborah Tanner, Corporate Senior Vice President and President of Covance Central Laboratory Services. "We expect that our clients will have a keen interest in this additional capability given Caprion's impressive track record of accelerating biomarker validation for early drug safety and efficacy assessment."

"We are excited to join forces with Covance's market-leading central laboratory and world-class scientific talent," said Martin LeBlanc, President and CEO of Caprion. "Over the past five years, Caprion has established a large pharmaceutical customer base through employing our distinctive, best-in-class technology platform, which we expect will be further adopted in the market as a result of our alliance with Covance. Most importantly, we believe this alliance, which combines Covance's leading research services platform with Caprion's leading biomarker platform, will yield superior biomarker solutions for our clients."

Covance to establish BiomarkerCenter of Excellence in Greenfield

To further accelerate and support the growth of its biomarker business, Covance plans to establish a Biomarker Center of Excellence at its campus in Greenfield, Indiana.

Given the high need that exists in drug development for both discovery and development biomarker capabilities, Covance's Biomarker Center of Excellence will focus specifically on biomarker testing and validation and leverage the discovery support services of Caprion and of the services that already reside at Greenfield, including in vivo preclinical safety and efficacy assessment, and a variety of sophisticated preclinical imaging modalities. This combined with Covance's extensive capabilities in first-in-human trials, clinical Phase II proof-of-concept and pivotal Phase III trials, post-marketing commitment, and Central Laboratory services, Covance's clients now have access to the most comprehensive integrated biomarker capabilities in the industry.

New Biomarker VP

Leading Covance's biomarker business will be Thomas Turi, Ph.D., Covance's new Vice President of Biomarkers. In his new role, Dr. Turi will be responsible for building Covance's Center of Excellence for Biomarkers in Greenfield and leading Covance's Biomarker Expert Team, a panel of top scientists representing Covance's biomarker capabilities.

Dr. Turi joins Covance with over 14 years of experience leading drug discovery projects ranging from exploratory through early development programs. Prior to Covance, Dr. Turi spent his career at Pfizer, where he held a broad array of scientific leadership positions of increasing responsibility. Most recently, Dr. Turi served as the Senior Director of Translational Biomarkers and Mechanistic Biology at Pfizer's laboratories in Groton, Connecticut.

Dr. Turi completed his postdoctoral training at Yale University's College of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut and received his Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. He holds dual B.S. degrees in Biochemistry and Chemistry from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

"I am confident that the scientific, business, and leadership experience of our new biomarker vice president, plus the creation of our Biomarker Center of Excellence in Greenfield, will allow us to accelerate the growth of our biomarker business," added Tanner. "We are confident that our biomarker expertise will help our clients increase the effectiveness and efficiency of their drug development programs in terms of speed, cost, and quality."

About Covance

Covance, with headquarters in Princeton, New Jersey, is one of the world's largest and most comprehensive drug development services companies with annual revenues greater than $1.5 billion, global operations in more than 20 countries, and more than 9,300 employees worldwide. Information on Covance's products and services, recent press releases, and SEC filings can be obtained through its website at

About Caprion Proteomics, Inc.

Caprion Proteomics is the leading provider of proteomics based services to the pharmaceutical industry. Caprion's proprietary proteomics discovery technology, CellCarta(R), is a gel-free, label-free mass spectrometry platform that enables a comprehensive, quantitative and robust measurement of the protein expression differences across large sets of biological samples. Caprion has been providing biomarker and target identification services since 2002, performing more than 30 large-scale biomarker projects for pharmaceutical industry clients such as Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, Abbott Laboratories, Biogen Idec, Daiichi-Sankyo, Mitsubishi-Tanabe, Wyeth, AstraZeneca, Merck, Boehringer Ingelheim, ICOS, Bayer-Schering , EMD-Serono, Vertex, DebioPharm and Transgene. Caprion also has been awarded two major 5-year Biodefense proteomics research contracts in infectious disease with the NIH-NIAID, and was awarded the Frost & Sullivan Biomarker Technology award in 2007. Caprion Proteomics, a privately-held company, is majority owned by Great Point Partners, LP. For more information, please visit:

Statements contained in this press release, which are not historical facts, such as statements about prospective earnings, savings, revenue, operations, revenue and earnings growth and other financial results are forward-looking statements pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All such forward-looking statements including the statements contained herein regarding anticipated trends in the Company's business are based largely on management's expectations and are subject to and qualified by risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such statements. These risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, competitive factors, outsourcing trends in the pharmaceutical industry, levels of industry research and development spending, the Company's ability to continue to attract and retain qualified personnel, the fixed price nature of contracts or the loss of large contracts, risks associated with acquisitions and investments, the Company's ability to increase order volume, the pace of translation of orders into revenue in late-stage development services, and other factors described in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission including its Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. The Company undertakes no duty to update any forward looking statement to conform the statement to actual results or changes in the Company's expectations.

SOURCE Covance Inc.
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