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Testopel® To Sponsor Professional Golfer Wrongly Accused of Doping

DURHAM, N.C., March 1, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Slate Pharmaceuticals  --  Testopel®, an FDA-approved testosterone replacement therapy product marketed by Slate Pharmaceuticals, Inc. of Durham, North Carolina, announced today that it has entered into a sponsorship agreement with professional golfer Doug Barron.

Barron, a long-time PGA Tour veteran from Memphis, Tennessee, is perhaps best known for being the first and only player in professional golf to be suspended for doping under the PGA Tour's "Anti-Doping" policy.

Barron's offense was taking a testosterone replacement medication prescribed to him by his medical doctors after blood tests revealed that he suffers from hypogonadism, a common but little understood medical condition informally called Low T.  Caused by a reduction in circulating levels of the hormone testosterone, Low T is treatable with testosterone replacement medication designed to restore the individual's testosterone to a level within the range normally found in men who do not suffer from Low T.

Barron filed a lawsuit charging that the PGA Tour had dishonestly labeled him as a doper and a cheater for doing nothing more than "taking medications prescribed for him by his medical doctors for perfectly normal and legitimate medical reasons."  His suit charged that the PGA Tour made knowingly false, misleading and defamatory statements about him "with reckless disregard for the entire truth of the subject matter."

The PGA Tour subsequently granted Barron the Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) for testosterone replacement therapy that it previously had denied to him. Neither side will comment about the lawsuit.

"Suspending Doug Barron for doping is dopey," Robert S. Whitehead, President & CEO of Slate Pharmaceuticals, Inc., said at the time of Barron's suspension. "The PGA Tour is creating the totally erroneous impression that Doug Barron is to golf what Mark McGwire is to baseball -- it's totally irresponsible."  

In coming to Barron's defense at the time of his wrongful suspension, Slate Pharmaceuticals and its CEO Whitehead made it clear that they had no connection with Barron, had never met him or spoken with him or his doctors, and that Barron had never even used the company's testosterone replacement therapy product, Testopel®.

"The reason that I spoke out on this matter at the time, and the reason we are taking this unusual step of sponsoring a professional athlete who has had such a label unjustly hanged upon him," said CEO Whitehead, "is that by its ill-advised action the PGA Tour made an unfortunate contribution to medical ignorance and harmed efforts to improve men's health.  There are many misconceptions about testosterone replacement therapy that have no scientific basis.  Perpetuating these misconceptions keeps men who might need treatment from seeking the medical care that they need."

"Doug Barron's only offense was being the innocent victim of other people's ignorance," said Whitehead.  "We look forward to this relationship with him."

No details of Testopel®'s sponsorship of Doug Barron were made public.

"I appreciate the fact that the people who market Testopel® saw my suspension as an injustice and stood up and spoke out about it, even though their product was not even the one I was using," said Doug Barron.  "I look forward to working closely with Testopel® to help educate the public about just how common Low T is and how easily treatable it is. I believe that together we are going to make an important contribution to the cause of men's health.  I intend to make this a cause."  

According to a study published in the International Journal of Clinical Practice, more than 13 million men in America suffer from Low T.  These men experience abnormally low libido, low energy, chronic fatigue and an overall feeling of depression.  In some cases the condition is completely debilitating.Contact: Cynthia WhiteheadExecutive Vice PresidentSLATE PHARMACEUTICALS, INC.Email: Tel: Testopel® is approved for testosterone replacement therapy in adult males for conditions associated with low or absent testosterone in the body.

Important Safety InformationMen with breast cancer should not use Testopel®. In patients with breast cancer, Testopel® may cause elevated calcium levels in the blood. Men who have or might have prostate cancer or have had a previous adverse reaction should not use Testopel®. Men treated with Testopel® may be at an increased risk for developing an enlarged prostate and prostatic cancer. Testopel® is not approved for use in women. If you are pregnant or may become pregnant, you should not use Testopel® because it may harm your unborn baby.

Swelling of your ankles, feet or body with or without heart failure may be a serious problem in patients treated with Testopel® who have heart, kidney or liver disease. In addition to your doctor stopping treatment with Testopel®, your doctor may need you to take a medicine known as a diuretic. Testopel® should be used cautiously in healthy males with delayed puberty. Adolescent males taking Testopel® for delayed puberty should have bone development checked every 6 months. In children, Testopel® may speed up bone maturity without having a similar gain in linear growth (height). This may result in a decreased adult height. Testopel® has not been shown to be safe and effective for the enhancement of athletic performance. Because of the potential risk for serious adverse health effects, Testopel® should not be used for such purpose.

Because Testopel® pellets are placed under the skin it is more difficult for your doctor to change the dosage compared to medicines taken by mouth or medicines injected into the muscle (intramuscular injection). Surgical removal may be required if treatment with Testopel® needs to be stopped. In addition, there are times when the Testopel® pellets may come out of the skin. While taking Testopel®, your doctor may periodically do tests to check for liver damage. You doctor may also check for increased red blood cell count if you are receiving high doses of Testopel®.

Side effects of Testopel® include more erections than normal or erections that last a long time, nausea, vomiting, changes in skin color, gynecomastia, ankle swelling, changes in body hair, male pattern baldness, acne, suppression of certain clotting factors, bleeding in patients on blood thinners, increase or decrease in libido, headache, anxiety, depression, inflammation and pain at the implantation site and rarely anaphylactoid reaction, a sudden onset of an allergic reaction.

For more information, please see the full prescribing information online at .

Available Topic Expert(s): For information on the listed expert(s), click appropriate link.

Robert S. Whitehead -


SOURCE Slate Pharmaceuticals
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