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Bayer HealthCare Marks 20th Anniversary of World Hemophilia Day With Euro 250,000 Contribution to the World Federation of Hemophilia
Date:4/17/2009

BERKELEY, Calif., April 17 /PRNewswire/ -- In recognition of the 20th anniversary of World Hemophilia Day, Bayer HealthCare reaffirmed its commitment to the global hemophilia community by pledging euro 250,000 to the World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH). To mark this milestone, Bayer employees around the world will engage in activities to support the mission of this annual event - to increase awareness of and promote support for the needs of people living with hemophilia and other bleeding disorders.

Bayer's annual contribution has helped support the WFH's treatment, care and education initiatives, including the Global Alliance for Progress (GAP) initiative, a program to increase the proper diagnosis and treatment of hemophilia and other bleeding disorders, and the International Hemophilia Nursing Fellowship Program, which provides hemophilia education and training to nurses in developing countries. Bayer is the sole sponsor of this Nursing Fellowship Program.

"The hemophilia community has seen considerable strides in diagnosis, treatment and care, since the first WHD was celebrated in 1989," said Mark Skinner, World Federation of Hemophilia president. "That momentum continues today with the establishment of new hemophilia treatment centers - which seek to address every aspect of patients' lives, including their physical, emotional and psychological well-being -- and the development of new therapies. With the ongoing support of our partners, like Bayer, we are improving care for people with bleeding disorders around the world and achieving our vision of 'Treatment For All.' "

Reflecting Bayer's commitment to the hemophilia community, employees around the world will engage in World Hemophilia Day activities under the theme "Love.Learn.Live." Through their commitment and action, hemophilia patients are better able to live the lives they choose.

"We at Bayer are passionate about improving the lives of all those touched by hemophilia, from patients and their families to caregivers and members of the healthcare community," said Michael E. Mathews, vice president and therapeutic area head, Hematology, Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals. "We applaud the efforts of the WFH and take great pride in knowing that our common commitment to developing advanced therapies and innovative patient support programs has played an important role in helping make life with hemophilia better, brighter and more secure than ever."

Over the last three decades, Bayer has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in research, clinical trials and post-marketing studies that have led to improved treatments and a better understanding of hemophilia as a disease. Today, as a leader in hemophilia research, Bayer continues to support advances in treatment by:

  • Developing a long-acting recombinant factor VIII product to assess the safety and efficacy of once-a-week treatment in people with severe hemophilia A. Bayer is currently the only company with such a product in human clinical trials.
  • Developing a next-generation recombinant factor VIIa protein that may provide additional treatment options to patients with hemophilia, who have developed antibodies - or inhibitors - to either factor VIII or factor IX.
  • Applying innovative technologies to develop a recombinant factor VIII molecule with potentially improved properties such as increased circulation time and reduced immunogenicity.
  • Investigating the effect of secondary prophylaxis on bleeding frequency and joint damage in adults.
  • Supporting investigator-sponsored trials such as the Joint Outcomes Study, the first and only randomized, controlled study showing that routine prophylaxis with Kogenate(R) FS significantly reduced the frequency of bleeding episodes and the risk of joint damage in children with no pre-existing joint damage(1).
  • Supporting the Bayer Hemophilia Awards Program (BHAP), one of the largest and oldest programs of its kind in the industry. Since 2002, BHAP has funded novel hemophilia research and education projects around the world.

Bayer has a long history of advocating for and supporting the global hemophilia community. Over the years, Bayer has donated more than 30 million international units of product to countries with limited access to hemophilia treatment and, just recently, provided critical support to develop hemophilia treatment centers throughout China, where approximately one quarter of the world's hemophilia population lives (between 70,000 and 100,000 people).

About Hemophilia A

Hemophilia A, also known as factor VIII deficiency or classic hemophilia, is largely an inherited bleeding disorder in which one of the proteins needed to form blood clots in the body is missing or reduced. Hemophilia A is the most common type of hemophilia and is characterized by prolonged or spontaneous bleeding, especially into the muscles, joints, or internal organs. Approximately 400,000 people around the world have hemophilia A.

About Kogenate(R) FS

Kogenate(R) FS (Antihemophilic Factor [Recombinant]) is a recombinant factor VIII treatment indicated for the control and prevention of bleeding episodes and perioperative management in adults and children (0-16 years) with hemophilia A. Kogenate(R) FS is indicated for routine prophylaxis to reduce the frequency of bleeding episodes and the risk of joint damage in children with hemophilia A with no preexisting joint damage.

The most serious adverse reactions are systemic hypersensitivity reactions and the development of high-titer inhibitors. The most frequently reported adverse events were local injection site reactions, dizziness and rash. Known intolerance or allergic reactions to constituents of the preparation is a contraindication to the use of Kogenate(R) FS. Known hypersensitivity to mouse or hamster protein may be a contraindication to the use of Kogenate(R) FS.

For important risk and use information, please see the full Prescribing Information at www.kogenatefs.com/prescribing-information.jsp.

About Bayer HealthCare

The Bayer Group is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, nutrition and high-tech materials. Bayer HealthCare, a subsidiary of Bayer AG, is one of the world's leading, innovative companies in the healthcare and medical products industry and is based in Leverkusen, Germany. The company combines the global activities of the Animal Health, Bayer Schering Pharma, Consumer Care and Medical Care divisions. Bayer HealthCare's aim is to discover and manufacture products that will improve human and animal health worldwide. Find more information at www.bayerhealthcare.com.

Bayer Schering Pharma is a worldwide leading specialty pharmaceutical company. Its research and business activities are focused on the following areas: Diagnostic Imaging, General Medicine, Specialty Medicine and Women's Healthcare. With innovative products, Bayer Schering Pharma aims for leading positions in specialized markets worldwide. Using new ideas, Bayer Schering Pharma aims to make a contribution to medical progress and strives to improve the quality of life. Find more information at www.bayerscheringpharma.de.

Forward-looking statements

This news release contains forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer Group management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in our annual and interim reports filed with the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.

(1) Manco-Johnson, MJ, Abshire, TC, et al. Prophylaxis versus Episodic Treatment to Prevent Joint Disease in Boys with Severe Hemophilia. N Engl J Med 2007; 357(6):535-544.


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