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Optherion, Inc. Completes $37 Million Start Up Financing
Date:10/9/2007

Financing Will Advance Development of Diagnostics and Disease-Modifying Therapeutics for Dry and Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration and Other

Diseases Associated with Alternative Complement System

NEW HAVEN, Conn., Oct. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Optherion, Inc., a company developing products to diagnose and treat dry and wet Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and other chronic diseases involving the alternative complement system, announced today that it has raised $37 million in start up financing.

Optherion's initial focus is to develop disease-modifying therapies to prevent loss of vision in patients with dry AMD, the leading cause of blindness in people over 60 in the developed world, as well as a portfolio of tests that predict, diagnose and monitor progression of the disease.

AMD is caused by degeneration of the macula, the region of the retina responsible for central vision. AMD is unique in that it is a common disease that has recently been linked to common variations in only a few specific genes, presenting opportunities to develop both diagnostic tests and disease- modifying treatments. There are 15-20 million people with AMD in the U.S. and more than 50 million worldwide.

A parallel area of company research is the development of diagnostics and therapeutics for Membranoproliferative Glomerulonephritis Type II (MPGN-II, also known as Dense Deposit Disease). This is an end-stage renal disease with an orphan-sized market prevalence, which typically manifests in individuals between 5 and 25 years of age. It is often caused by the same genetic variations underlying AMD.

Optherion's proprietary technologies are also being investigated for the diagnosis and treatment of other chronic diseases related to the alternative complement system.

Optherion was founded following scientific discoveries published in 2005 linking the role of Complement Factor H (CFH) and Complement Factor B (CFB) -- both regulators of the
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SOURCE Optherion, Inc.
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