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Roche completes acquisition of ARIUS

- Gains access to new screening platform for antibody therapeutics

BASEL, Switzerland, Sept. 24 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ - Roche (SWX: ROG) announced today that it has completed the acquisition of 100% of the issued and outstanding shares and warrants of ARIUS Research (TSX: ARI). On September 19th, the Ontario Superior Court, Canada, approved the Plan of Arrangement previously approved by the security holders and announced in a press release dated 23 July 2008. All other conditions of closing have been satisfied.

ARIUS is the developer of a proprietary antibody platform called FunctionFIRST(TM), which rapidly identifies and selects antibodies based on their functional ability to affect disease before progressing into clinical development. This antibody generation engine has enabled ARIUS to develop a pipeline of more than 500 antibody drug candidates. The FunctionFIRST(TM) technology platform will allow Roche to further strengthen its developmental portfolio, initially within the areas of oncology and inflammatory diseases where this new technique offers potentially broad therapeutic applications.

About Roche

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is one of the world's leading research-focused healthcare groups in the fields of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. As the world's biggest biotech company and an innovator of products and services for the early detection, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases, the Group contributes on a broad range of fronts to improving people's health and quality of life. Roche is the world leader in in-vitro diagnostics and drugs for cancer and transplantation, and is a market leader in virology. It is also active in other major therapeutic areas such as autoimmune diseases, inflammatory and metabolic disorders and diseases of the central nervous system. In 2007 sales by the Pharmaceuticals Division totalled 36.8 billion Swiss francs, and the Diagnostics Division posted sales of 9.3 billion francs. Roche has R&D agreements and strategic alliances with numerous partners, including majority ownership interests in Genentech and Chugai, and invested over 8 billion Swiss francs in R&D in 2007. Worldwide, the Group employs about 80,000 people. Additional information is available on the Internet at

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SOURCE ARIUS Research Inc.
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