Morphotek announces issuance of broad patent covering the generation of optimized yeast strains for biotherapeutic and biological product discovery, development, and manufacturing

Morphotek, Inc.

Morphotek announces issuance of broad patent covering the generation of optimized yeast strains for biotherapeutic and biological product discovery, development, and manufacturing

December 15, 2003

Exton, PA, December 15, 2003 -- Morphotek Inc. announced today that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued it U.S. Patent 6,656,736 covering the generation of novel, genetically evolved yeast strains for use in biotherapeutic and biological product discovery, development, and manufacturing. The issued patent describes the use of the company's patented platform process, morphogenics, to rapidly evolve yeast strains capable of expressing a variety of biological products, such as enhanced or high-titer protein therapeutics, antibodies, and biological products for industrial and food uses.

Dr. Nicholas Nicolaides, President and Chief Executive Officer of Morphotek commented, "This application is another example of how our platform can be readily applied to develop a wide variety of customized organisms for pharmaceutical and industrial product discovery and development. This platform offers a novel approach to generate optimized therapeutic proteins directly within a yeast host as well as develop high-titer yeast strains for the manufacturing of protein-based products."

"This patent, and several others that have issued over the course of this year, will strengthen our already dominant position in the field of in vivo mutagenesis," added Dr. Philip M. Sass, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, "and demonstrates that our technology is broadly applicable to many different species, from man to simple eukaryotic yeast species."

Morphotek® Inc. is a biotechnology company specializing in the development of protein and antibody products through the use of a novel and proprietary gene evolution technology. The technology has been successfully applied to a broad variety of cell lines and organisms to yield genetically diverse offspring that are suitable for pharmaceutical product development in the areas of antibody therapeutics, protein therapeutics, product manufacturing, drug target discovery, and improved output traits for commercial applications. The company is currently focusing its platform on the development and manufacturing of therapeutic antibodies for the treatment of cancer, inflammation and infectious disease. For further company information visit www.morphotek.com.

For Information Contact:
Dr. Mary Callan; 610-423-6147; callan@morphotek.com