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Richard E.T. Smith, Ph.D. Joins Pharmasset as Vice President of Investor Relations and Corporate Communications

PRINCETON, N.J., Oct. 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Pharmasset, Inc. (Nasdaq: VRUS) announces that Richard E.T. Smith, Ph.D., is joining the Company as Vice President of Investor Relations and Corporate Communications. Dr. Smith will be responsible for all investor relations functions and will report directly to Chief Financial Officer Kurt Leutzinger.

Most recently, Dr. Smith was a Vice President and Senior Biotechnology Analyst at JPMorgan Securities, and has been an analyst in the sector since 2000. Dr. Smith holds a Ph.D. from the University of Oxford with a focus in Virology, Immunology and Molecular Biology and has published research in medical journals including Virology.

"We are pleased to welcome Richard to Pharmasset," said Schaefer Price, CEO. "As a seasoned analyst with expertise in our areas of disease focus who has earned the trust of investors, he will continue to strengthen our relationship with our shareholders and the investment community."

About Hepatitis C

Hepatitis C is a blood-borne infectious disease of the liver and is a leading cause of chronic liver disease and liver transplants. The WHO estimates that nearly 180 million people worldwide, or approximately 3% of the world's population, are infected with hepatitis C virus (HCV). The CDC has reported that almost four million people in the United States have been infected with HCV, of whom 2.7 million are chronically infected.

About Pharmasset

Pharmasset is a clinical-stage pharmaceutical company committed to discovering, developing and commercializing novel drugs to treat viral infections. Pharmasset's primary focus is on the development of oral therapeutics for the treatment of hepatitis B virus (HBV), hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

Pharmasset is currently developing three product candidates. Clevudine, for the treatment of chronic HBV infection, is enrolling Phase 3 clinical trials for registration in North, Central and South America and Europe. Clevudine is already approved for HBV in South Korea and marketed by Bukwang Pharmaceuticals in South Korea under the brand name Levovir. R7128, an oral treatment for chronic HCV infection, is in a 4-week Phase 1 clinical trial in combination with Pegasys(R) plus Copegus(R) through a strategic collaboration with Roche. Racivir, which is being developed for the treatment of HIV in combination with other approved HIV drugs, has completed a Phase 2 clinical trial.

Pegasys(R) and Copegus(R) are registered trademarks of Roche.


Kurt Leutzinger


Office: +1 (609) 613-4110

Forward-Looking Statements

Pharmasset "Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding our business that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties, including without limitation, the risk that adverse events could cause the cessation or delay of any of the ongoing or planned clinical trials and/or our development of our product candidates, the risk that the results of previously conducted studies involving our product candidates will not be repeated or observed in ongoing or future studies involving our product candidates, the risk that our collaboration with Roche will not continue or will not be successful and the risk that any one or more of our product candidates will not be successfully developed and commercialized. For a discussion of these risks and uncertainties, any of which could cause our actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see the section of our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2007 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission entitled "Risk Factors" and discussions of potential risks and uncertainties in our subsequent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

SOURCE Pharmasset, Inc.
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