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Neuromed Announces that Merck & Co., Inc. Terminates Research Collaboration and License Agreement for Compounds Targeting N-Type Calcium Channels
Date:6/11/2009

CONSHOHOCKEN, PA and VANCOUVER, BC, June 11 /PRNewswire/ - Neuromed Pharmaceuticals Ltd. announced today that it has received notification that Merck & Co., Inc. will terminate the research collaboration and license agreement for novel compounds targeting N-type calcium channels for the treatment of pain and other disorders, which the companies entered into in March of 2006.

"Over the past three years we have had an excellent and extremely productive collaboration with our colleagues at Merck. The molecules generated in our collaboration, while effective in disease models, did not demonstrate the profile needed to enter the next phase of testing, including human clinical trials. We remain confident in our goal to generate a new class of medicines from our platform," said Dr. Christopher Gallen, President & CEO of Neuromed. "Neuromed is a leader in ion channel research and we remain committed to further research and development in this field."

N-type calcium channel blockers represent a potentially novel class of analgesics that are selective for calcium channels involved in pain signal transmission. Calcium channels control the entry of calcium into the neuron. When a pain signal is transmitted, the channel opens and the calcium concentration increases, triggering the release of neurotransmitters from synaptic vesicles, thereby sending the pain signal to the brain where it is perceived as pain.

About Neuromed

Neuromed is a privately held biopharmaceutical company focusing on the development of new and improved pain medicines. Its lead drug candidate is EXALGO(TM) (hydromorphone HCl) Extended-Release Tablets. In addition to its N-type program, Neuromed is also developing oral drug candidates to block T-type calcium channels, a new and important target directly involved in pain, epilepsy and hypertension. For more information visit our website at www.neurom
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SOURCE Neuromed Pharmaceuticals Ltd.
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