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VIA Pharmaceuticals Announces Grant of New Patent on Lead Compound VIA-2291

SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 25 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- VIA Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: VIAP), a biotechnology company focused on the development of compounds for the treatment of cardiovascular and metabolic disease, today announced the issuance of United States Patent No. 7,495,024 entitled "Phenylalkyl N-Hydroxyureas for Combating Atherosclerotic Plaque", covering the use of VIA's lead compound, VIA-2291, for the treatment of atherosclerosis. This patent is also pending in other major markets worldwide.

VIA-2291, which is currently in Phase II development for the treatment of cardiovascular disease caused by atherosclerosis, targets inflammation in the blood vessel wall, an underlying cause of atherosclerosis. A growing body of scientific evidence and data from the VIA-2291 clinical program points to reduction of inflammation and inflammatory processes in the vessel wall as a critical step in combating cardiovascular disease and its complications, including heart attack and stroke.

"Our clinical trial results presented at the most recent meeting of the American Heart Association in New Orleans provides important evidence for VIA-2291's effect on reducing vascular inflammation. This patent is an important step in the commercial development of the compound by providing VIA with exclusivity in this very large and underserved market through 2026," said Lawrence K. Cohen, Ph.D., chief executive officer of VIA Pharmaceuticals. "We are pleased with the issuance of this important patent as it further strengthens and builds on our existing intellectual property protection for our lead clinical compound."

About VIA Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

VIA Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a biotechnology company focused on the development of compounds for the treatment of cardiovascular and metabolic disease. VIA's lead candidate, VIA-2291, targets a significant unmet medical need: reducing inflammation in the blood vessel wall, which is an underlying cause of atherosclerosis and its complications, including heart attack and stroke. In addition, VIA's pipeline of drug candidates includes other compounds to address other underlying causes of cardiovascular disease: high cholesterol, diabetes and inflammation. For more information, visit:

Forward Looking Statements

This press release may contain "forward-looking" statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements relate to future events or to VIA's future financial performance and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause VIA's actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by the use of words such as "may," "could," "expect," "intend," "plan," "seek," "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "predict," "potential," "continue" or the negative of these terms or other comparable terminology. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements since they involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which are, in some cases, beyond VIA's control and which could materially affect actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements.

    Factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from current
    expectations include, but are not limited to:
        -- our ability to obtain necessary financing in the near term;
        -- our ability to control our operating expenses;
        -- our ability to recruit and enroll patients for the FDG-PET clinical
           trial, as well as any future clinical trial;
        -- failure to obtain sufficient data from enrolled patients that can
           be used to evaluate VIA-2291, thereby impairing the validity or
           statistical significance of our clinical trials;
        -- our ability to successfully complete our clinical trials of VIA-
           2291 on expected timetables and the outcomes of such clinical
        -- complexities in designing and implementing cardiovascular clinical
           trials using histological examinations, measurement of biomarkers,
           medical imaging and atherosclerotic plaque bioassays;
        -- the results of our clinical trials, including without limitation,
           with respect to the safety and efficacy of VIA-2291;
        -- if the results of the ACS and CEA studies, upon further review and
           analysis, are revised or negated by authorities or by later
           stage clinical trials;
        -- our ability to obtain necessary FDA approvals;
        -- our ability to successfully commercialize VIA-2291;
        -- our ability to obtain and protect our intellectual property related
           to our product candidates;
        -- our potential for future growth and the development of our product
           pipeline, including the THR beta agonist candidate and the other
           compounds licensed from Roche;
        -- our ability to form and maintain collaborative relationships to
           develop and commercialize our product candidates;
        -- general economic and business conditions; and
        -- the other risks described under Item IA "Risk Factors" in our
           Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31,
           2007 and in our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the fiscal
           quarter ended September 30, 2008 on file with the SEC.

All forward-looking statements attributable to us or persons acting on our behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements set forth above. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and VIA undertakes no obligation to update publicly any of these statements in light of new information or future events.

SOURCE VIA Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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