BELLUS Health Announces Grant of New U.S. Patent Covering Lead Compound for Chronic Cough

- Composition of Matter Patent with Expiration Date in 2034 -

LAVAL, QC, April 24, 2017 /CNW/ - BELLUS Health (TSX:BLU) (BELLUS Health or the Company), a biopharmaceutical development company advancing novel therapeutics for conditions with high unmet medical need, today announced that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued U.S Patent. No. 9,598,409, which grants claims covering the composition of matter of BELLUS' lead drug candidate, BLU-5937, and related imidazopyridine compounds, in addition to pharmaceutical compositions comprising BLU-5937 and uses thereof. The patent has an expiration date of 2034, excluding any potential patent term extension. Patent applications with similarly broad claims are currently pending in Europe, Japan, China and other industrialized nations.

"This U.S. patent affords broad and comprehensive composition of matter protection for our lead drug candidate, BLU-5937, in the most important pharmaceutical market in the world," said Roberto Bellini, President and CEO of BELLUS Health. "We expect the intellectual property estate for BLU-5937 to continue expanding and provide robust worldwide patent protection."

About BLU-5937

BLU-5937 is an orally administered small molecule being developed for the treatment of chronic cough. BLU-5937 is a potent and selective antagonist of P2X3 receptors located on airway sensory neurons. In chronic cough, the P2X3 receptor is involved in hypersensitization of these neurons, leading to an increased urge to cough and a decreased threshold for cough reflex activation. The P2X3 receptor is a clinically-validated target for the treatment of chronic cough and the potent antitussive effect of BLU-5937 has been demonstrated in preclinical cough models.

About Chronic Cough

Chronic cough is a cough that lasts for more than eight weeks and is associated with significant adverse social, psychosocial and physical effects on quality of life. It is estimated that, in the United States alone, more than 27 million patients suffer from chronic cough. While an underlying etiology such as gastro-oesophageal reflux, asthma, or allergic rhinitis may contribute to cough in some of these patients, an underlying condition cannot be identified in 10%-40% of chronic cough patients (unexplained chronic cough). A portion of patients with an underlying condition as well as the large majority of unexplained chronic cough patients are not well controlled by current therapies.

About BELLUS Health

BELLUS Health is a biopharmaceutical development company advancing novel therapeutics for conditions with high unmet medical need. Its pipeline of projects includes BLU-5937 for chronic cough and several other partnered clinical-stage drug development programs.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements contained in this news release, other than statements of fact that are independently verifiable at the date hereof, may constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Canadian securities legislation and regulations. Such statements, based as they are on the current expectations of management, inherently involve numerous important risks, uncertainties and assumptions, known and unknown, many of which are beyond BELLUS Health Inc.'s control. Such risks factors include but are not limited to: the ability to obtain financing, the impact of general economic conditions, general conditions in the pharmaceutical industry, changes in the regulatory environment in the jurisdictions in which BELLUS Health Inc. does business, stock market volatility, fluctuations in costs, changes to the competitive environment due to consolidation, achievement of forecasted burn rate, potential payments/outcomes in relation to indemnity agreements and contingent value rights, achievement of forecasted pre-clinical and clinical trial milestones and that actual results may vary once the final and quality-controlled verification of data and analyses has been completed. In addition, the length of BELLUS Health Inc.'s drug candidates development process, their market size and commercial value, as well as the sharing of proceeds between BELLUS Health Inc. and its potential partners from potential future revenues, if any, are dependent upon a number of factors. Consequently, actual future results and events may differ materially from the anticipated results and events expressed in the forward-looking statements. The Company believes that expectations represented by forward-looking statements are reasonable, yet there can be no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. The reader should not place undue reliance, if any, on any forward-looking statements included in this news release. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date made, and BELLUS Health Inc. is under no obligation and disavows any intention to update publicly or revise such statements as a result of any new information, future event, circumstances or otherwise, unless required by applicable legislation or regulation. Please see BELLUS Health Inc.'s public filings with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities, including the Annual Information Form, for further risk factors that might affect BELLUS Health Inc. and its business.

SOURCE BELLUS Health Inc.

For further information: François Desjardins, Vice-President, Finance, 450-680-4525, fdesjardins@bellushealth.com

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