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Prometheus Strengthens Intellectual Property Portfolio with Newly Issued Patents for Thiopurine Metabolite Testing

SAN DIEGO, Oct. 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Prometheus Laboratories Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical and diagnostics company, announced that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued two separate patents covering the technology for PROMETHEUS(R) Thiopurine Metabolites, a diagnostic test that enables physicians to optimize ongoing dosing of thiopurines to reach and maintain desired therapeutic levels. The USPTO has approved the issuance of the claims in U.S. Patent Nos. 7,425,546 and 7,429,570, both entitled, "Methods of optimizing drug therapeutic efficacy for treatment of immune- mediated gastrointestinal disorders."

"We are pleased that the USPTO has acknowledged the validity of these patents and approved their issuance," said William Franzblau, Vice President of Legal Affairs for Prometheus. "This is another example of our ongoing commitment to growing our substantial intellectual property portfolio, which we believe is a key competitive advantage. In addition, we will continue to protect and vigorously enforce our proprietary rights, if necessary."

PROMETHEUS(R) Thiopurine Metabolites helps keep patients' drug metabolite levels within an optimal therapeutic range, thereby increasing the probability of a positive response and potentially reducing the need for other medications. Thiopurine metabolites testing helps identify some of the reasons for treatment failure and monitor for potential toxicity before it occurs.

Combined, Prometheus' thiopurine management diagnostic tests - PROMETHEUS(R) TPMT Genetics and PROMETHEUS(R) TPMT Enzyme for individualizing dosing before therapy, and PROMETHEUS(R) Thiopurine Metabolites for optimizing dosing during therapy - provide information that helps physicians better manage therapeutic treatment, achieve better clinical outcomes and lower the potential for toxicity.

About Thiopurines

Thiopurines are a class of drugs that include azathioprine and mercaptopurine. These drugs are indicated as an adjunct for the prevention of rejection in renal homotransplantations, as well as for the management of active rheumatoid arthritis to reduce signs and symptoms. Although not indicated for inflammatory bowel disease, thiopurines are sometimes prescribed by physicians for such use. Their effectiveness and side effects can vary due to each person's ability to process or metabolize thiopurines. Most people have no problem metabolizing thiopurines, however, less than one percent of patients have almost no ability to metabolize these drugs. Failure to metabolize thiopurines can result in myelosuppression and hepatotoxicity, which can lead to death.

About Prometheus

Prometheus Laboratories Inc. is a specialty pharmaceutical and diagnostics company committed to developing and commercializing novel pharmaceutical and diagnostic products to help physicians individualize patient care. Prometheus is currently focused on the detection, diagnosis and treatment of gastrointestinal diseases and disorders in the United States. Its strategy includes the marketing and delivery of pharmaceutical products complemented by proprietary, high-value diagnostic testing services. By integrating pharmaceutical products and diagnostic testing services, Prometheus believes it can address the full continuum of care, thereby providing physicians with a comprehensive solution to treat chronic diseases. Prometheus' corporate offices are located in San Diego, California.

SOURCE Prometheus Laboratories Inc.
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