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Smith & Nephew Announces Breakthrough VERILAST(TM) Technology

Studies show a stronger and longer lasting knee

MEMPHIS, Tenn. and SAN FRANCISCO, March 4 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Smith & Nephew, Inc. (NYSE: SNN, LSE: SN) Orthopaedic Reconstruction business today announced the introduction of its VERILAST(TM) Technology. VERILAST Technology represents a technological leap forward in implant performance for knee replacement surgery. VERILAST Technology is an optimized material combination engineered specifically to improve knee implant performance and durability. This technology combines Smith & Nephew's award winning OXINIUM(TM) material with highly cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE) to produce a one-of-a-kind total knee replacement device.

"Smith & Nephew has a longstanding reputation for providing surgeons with innovative technologies designed to maximize patient outcomes," said Joseph DeVivo, president of Smith & Nephew Orthopaedic Reconstruction. "Initial data on implant wear compared to competitive systems has been very encouraging. Due to the significant improvements we are observing in wear rates over competitive material combinations, a knee with VERILAST Technology may be the only implant many patients ever receive. Combined with our award-winning OXINIUM Oxidized Zirconium, the history of innovation in implant endurance continues with the introduction of our VERILAST Technology."

In lab testing, Smith & Nephew researchers demonstrated that the composition of both articulating surfaces is critical to the performance of the entire bearing couple. When XLPE is combined with OXINIUM alloy, significant improvements in wear resistance are both provided and maintained. Smith & Nephew is the only orthopaedic manufacturer that utilizes high performance materials in both bearing surfaces to improve knee implant wear performance.

Smith & Nephew's knee portfolio includes the JOURNEY(TM) BCS, JOURNEY DEUCE(TM) and LEGION(TM) Total Knee System.

About OXINIUM(TM) Oxidized Zirconium

OXINIUM is a proprietary transformed metal alloy with a ceramic bearing surface. OXINIUM alloy is twice as hard and provides 1/2 the friction of CoCr implants and is extremely durable. This trailblazing technology is the only orthopaedic implant material to receive the ASM International Engineering Materials Award for outstanding achievement of a material used in the design and manufacture of products.

OXINIUM Oxidized Zirconium was developed and patented by many individuals within the Smith & Nephew Orthopaedic Research, Development, and Manufacturing groups. All of Smith & Nephew's major knee and hip implant systems, including the GENESIS(TM) II Total Knee System, the LEGION(TM) Total Knee System, the JOURNEY(TM) BCS Bi-Cruciate Stabilized Knee system, the JOURNEY DEUCE(TM) Bi- Compartmental Knee System, the SYNERGY(TM) Total Hip System and the ANTHOLOGY(TM) Total Hip System, are available with OXINIUM(TM) Oxidized Zirconium technology. The first OXINIUM Oxidized Zirconium component was implanted in 1995 with more than 230,000 hip and knee components implanted with remarkable clinical success.

(TM) Trademark of Smith & Nephew. Certain marks Reg. US Pat. & TM Off.

About us

Smith & Nephew is a global medical technology business, specializing in Orthopaedic Reconstruction, Orthopaedic Trauma & Clinical Therapies, Endoscopy and Advanced Wound Management products. Smith & Nephew is a global leader in arthroscopy and advanced wound management and is one of the leading global orthopaedics companies.

Smith & Nephew is dedicated to helping improve people's lives. The Company prides itself on the strength of its relationships with its surgeons and professional healthcare customers, with whom its name is synonymous with high standards of performance, innovation and trust. The company has 8,800 employees and operates in 32 countries around the world. Annual Sales in 2007 were nearly $3.4 billion.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains certain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the US Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In particular, statements regarding planned growth in our business and in our trading margins discussed under "Outlook" are forward-looking statements as are discussions of our product pipeline. These statements, as well as the phrases "aim", "plan", "intend", "anticipate", "well-placed", "believe", "estimate", "expect", "target", "consider" and similar expressions, are generally intended to identify forward-looking statements. Such forward- looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors (including, but not limited to, the outcome of litigation and regulatory approvals) that could cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Smith & Nephew, or industry results, to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Please refer to the documents that Smith & Nephew has filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission under the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, including Smith & Nephew's most recent annual report on Form 20F, for a discussion of certain of these factors.

All forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to Smith & Nephew as of the date hereof. All written or oral forward-looking statements attributable to Smith & Nephew or any person acting on behalf of Smith & Nephew are expressly qualified in their entirety by the foregoing. Smith & Nephew does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement contained herein to reflect any change in Smith & Nephew's expectation with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.

SOURCE Smith & Nephew, Inc.
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