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Access Pharmaceuticals Provides Second Quarter Update on MuGard Commercial Activities

DALLAS and NEW YORK, Aug. 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- ACCESS PHARMACEUTICALS, INC. (OTCBB: ACCP), a biopharmaceutical company leveraging its proprietary drug-delivery platforms to develop treatments in areas of oncology, diabetes, and RNAi, has announced its second quarter 2011 investor conference call and the recent progress in its MuGard program.   MuGard is a mucoadhesive oral wound rinse and coating that has been shown to be very effective in the management of oral mucositis, a debilitating side effect of many anticancer treatments.  The investor conference call is scheduled to be held on Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:00 am EDT.  Interested parties may participate by dialing 877-407-4019 (US) or 201-689-8337 (International) approximately five to ten minutes before the call start time.  

Second Quarter 2011 Highlights:

  • Payer Uptake Accelerates: Throughout the second quarter, Access made significant progress in increasing reimbursement for MuGard throughout the U.S.  From pharmacy benefit manager (PBM), CVS Caremark, to insurance payers like, TRICARE, Humana, United Healthcare, Harvard Pilgrim, SummaCare, Amerigroup and several Blue Cross Blue Shield state plans, reimbursement for MuGard is available for over 65 million lives and growing.

  • MuGard PRSC: In mid-July, Access launched the MuGard Patient Reimbursement and Support Center (PRSC), also known as the MuGard HUB, to serve as a centralized patient referral center that improves patient access to MuGard by enhancing product distribution and facilitating payment for MuGard by insurance carriers.  The MuGard HUB is handling reimbursement currently, and having success with both private payers as well as supplemental insurance plans of Medicare patients.

  • Salesforce Management:  In 2Q 2011, Access sales reps continued its broad-scale marketing push for MuGard.  Access has identified under-resourced geographic areas and has added additional coverage.   Access continues to have discussions with potential co-promotion partners.

  • Specialty Pharmacy Networks: Additionally in the second quarter, Access began executing on its distribution strategy to expand its specialty distribution and market access arrangements nationwide.  As recently announced, CSPN, Community Specialty Pharmacy Network, joined Access' specialty pharmacy network. Access continues exploring additional specialty pharmacy and distribution networks to further propel its MuGard national market access program.

  • MuGard Prescriptions Ramping:  MuGard prescriptions continued ramping throughout the second quarter, with a greater than 90% increase in quarterly prescription totals from 1Q 2010.  Sites prescribing MuGard continue to provide feedback and anecdotal evidence of positive clinical experiences.  Over 500 doctors have prescribed MuGard for their patients and over 75% of these doctors are recurring prescribers.  

  • Manufacturing and Distribution:  Due to the significant prescription ramp and MuGard access program, Access successfully completed its second commercial manufacturing run of MuGard product.  Access produced approximately three times as much MuGard product during its second commercial production run to meet the ongoing demands of the market.  

  • Public Relations Campaign:  Access believes it is at the right point in the MuGard growth story to begin increasing awareness of its oral mucositis product in the consumer and trade media outlets.  To aid in its effort to raise the profile of MuGard in the media, Access sought out an industry leader, Edelman Worldwide, to convey the key messages and competitive advantages associated with MuGard.  Through this campaign, Access aims to reach a broad audience, comprised of patients, caregivers, doctors, nurses and oncology professionals to continue educating them on the clear clinical benefit gained by using MuGard from day one of cancer treatment.

  • Ongoing Patient and Clinician Feedback: Access is focused on growing clinical experience at the oncologist, nurse practitioner, nurse and patient levels.  Clinical data and anecdotal feedback from clinicians, nurses and patients across the US is ongoing.  Access continues receiving overwhelmingly positive clinical feedback on MuGard from healthcare providers and patients from a broad spectrum of clinical settings, treatment regimens and tumor types.

  • Management Comments:"Access has made significant progress in building the necessary infrastructure to support the growth and demand for MuGard, our oral mucositis treatment," said Jeffrey Davis, President and CEO of Access Pharmaceuticals, Inc.  He continued, "The third party payer uptake, specialty pharmacy network and pharmacy benefit manager additions reflect that we have the strategy and team in place to address the growing need for MuGard in the marketplace.  We remain focused and committed to continuing on this trajectory, to ultimately provide patients control against oral mucositis from day one of their cancer treatment regimens."

    Anthony Mottola, Vice President Managed Care and Market Access for Access Pharmaceuticals, Inc. stated, "We are pleased with the progress made on the reimbursement front throughout the second quarter.  Having worked diligently to pursue each milestone and execute each accomplishment ahead of schedule, we have exceeded my expectations. We now look to keep the momentum going by advancing our active discussions with additional payers and PBMs."

    Conference Call Details:The investor conference call is scheduled to be held on Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:00 am EDT.  Interested parties may participate by dialing 877-407-4019 (US) or 201-689-8337 (International) approximately five to ten minutes before the call start time.

    A replay of the call will be available starting on September 7th at 1:00 pm EDT, through September 21, 2011 until 11:59 pm EDT.  Interested parties may access the replay by dialing 877-660-6853 (US) or 201-612-7415 (International) and entering account number 383 and conference ID number 377785.

    About MuGard:MuGard is a novel; ready-to-use mucoadhesive oral wound rinse and coating for the management of oral mucositis, a debilitating side effect of many anticancer treatments. Up to 40% of all patients receiving chemotherapy and radiotherapy develop moderate to severe mucositis, and almost all patients receiving radiotherapy for head and neck cancer and those undergoing stem cell transplantation develop mucositis. Updated clinical practice guidelines for the prevention and treatment of mucositis recommend the use of a preventive oral care regimen as part of routine supportive care along with a therapeutic oral care regimen if mucositis develops. The market for the treatment of oral mucositis is estimated to be in excess of $1 billion world-wide.  For more information, please visit

    About Access:Access Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is an emerging biopharmaceutical company that develops and commercializes proprietary products for the treatment and supportive care of cancer patients. Access' products include MuGard™ (, which has received FDA marketing clearance for the management of patients with mucositis, ProLindac™, a second generation DACH Platinum in Phase 2 clinical testing of patients with ovarian cancer, and Thiarabine™, a novel nucleoside analog that has demonstrated both pre-clinical and clinical activity in certain cancers; currently in a Phase 1/2a trial in hematological malignancies at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas.  

    The company also has other advanced drug delivery technologies including CobaCyte™-mediated targeted delivery and CobOral-oral drug delivery, its proprietary nanopolymer delivery technology based on the natural vitamin B12 uptake mechanism.  For additional information on Access Pharmaceuticals, please visit our website at

    This press release contains certain statements that are forward-looking within the meaning of Section 27a of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and that involve risks and uncertainties. These statements include those relating to: our cash burn rate, clinical trial plans and timelines and clinical results for ProLindac, MuGard, Thiarabine and Cobalamin and other product candidates, our ability to achieve clinical and commercial success and our ability to successfully develop marketed products. These statements are subject to numerous risks, including but not limited to Access' need to obtain additional financing in order to continue the clinical trial and operations and to the risks detailed in Access' Annual Reports on Form 10-K and other reports filed by Access with the Securities and Exchange Commission.Contact: Company

    Contact: Investor RelationsChristine Berni

    Donald C. WeinbergerDirector of Investor Relations

    Wolfe Axelrod Weinberger Assoc. LLCAccess Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

    (212) 370-4500(212) 786-6208

    SOURCE Access Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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