Cipher Pharmaceuticals comments on Purdue Pharma Citizen Petition



    Toronto Stock Exchange Symbol: DND

    MISSISSAUGA, ON, March 15 /CNW/ - Cipher Pharmaceuticals Inc. (TSX: DND)
("Cipher" or "the Company") today commented on a "Citizen Petition" submitted
yesterday to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) by Purdue Pharma L.P.
regarding Cipher's New Drug Application (NDA) for CIP-TRAMADOL ER, an
extended-release capsule formulation of the pain medication tramadol. The
six-page Citizen Petition contains allegations regarding the appropriate
reference listed drug and patent certification for the Company's NDA, and
whether the NDA should be approved as submitted. The Company believes that
these allegations and the Citizen Petition are baseless and without merit, and
that the Company's NDA satisfies all statutory and regulatory requirements for
approval.

    About Cipher Pharmaceuticals Inc.

    Cipher Pharmaceuticals is a drug development company focused on
commercializing novel formulations of successful, currently marketed molecules
using advanced drug delivery technologies. Cipher's strategy is to in-license
products that incorporate proven drug delivery technologies and advance them
through the clinical development and regulatory approval stages, after which
the products are out-licensed to international partners. Because Cipher's
products are based on proven technology platforms applied to currently
marketed drugs, they are expected to have lower approval risk, shorter
development timelines and significantly lower development costs. Cipher
currently has three late-stage drugs in its pipeline. The Company's lead
compound, CIP-FENOFIBRATE, received final approval from the U.S. Food and Drug
Administration and Health Canada in the first quarter of 2006. In addition,
Cipher is developing formulations of the pain reliever tramadol (currently
under regulatory review by the FDA) and the acne treatment isotretinoin
(currently under regulatory review by the FDA).
    Cipher is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol 'DND' and
has approximately 24 million shares outstanding. For more information, please
visit www.cipherpharma.com.

    Forward-Looking Statements

    Statements made in this news release, other than those concerning
historical financial information, may be forward-looking and therefore subject
to various risks and uncertainties. Some forward-looking statements may be
identified by words like "may", "will", "anticipate", "estimate", "expect",
"intend", or "continue" or the negative thereof or similar variations. Certain
material factors or assumptions are applied in making forward-looking
statements and actual results may differ materially from those expressed or
implied in such statements. Factors that could cause results to vary include
those identified in the Company's Annual Information Form and other filings
with Canadian securities regulatory authorities, such as the applicability of
patents and proprietary technology; possible patent litigation; regulatory
approval of products in the Company's pipeline; changes in government
regulation or regulatory approval processes; government and third-party payer
reimbursement; dependence on strategic partnerships for product candidates and
technologies, marketing and R&D services; meeting projected drug development
timelines and goals; intensifying competition; rapid technological change in
the pharmaceutical industry; anticipated future losses; the ability to access
capital to fund R&D; and the ability to attract and retain key personnel. All
forward-looking statements presented herein should be considered in
conjunction with such filings. The Company does not undertake to update any
forward-looking statements; such statements speak only as of the date made.

    %SEDAR: 00020415E




For further information:

For further information: Craig Armitage, Investor Relations, The Equicom
Group, (416) 815-0700 ext 278, (416) 815-0080 fax, carmitage@equicomgroup.com;
Larry Andrews, President & Chief Executive Officer, Cipher Pharmaceuticals,
(905) 602-5840 ext 24, (905) 602-0628 fax, landrews@cipherpharma.com


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