Raptor Pharmaceuticals Acquires Initial Clinical Program Establishes Subsidiary to Develop Clinical Phase Drugs



    NOVATO, Calif., Oct. 22 /CNW/ -- Raptor Pharmaceuticals Corp. ("Raptor")
(OTC Bulletin Board:   RPTP.OB), today announced the acquisition of its first
clinical-stage product and the formation of a wholly- owned subsidiary, Bennu
Pharmaceuticals Inc. The subsidiary will be responsible for clinical
development of internally discovered therapeutic candidates based on Raptor
Pharmaceutical's novel drug delivery platforms and in-licensed clinical-stage
products. Bennu will focus initially on a product targeting aldehyde
dehydrogenase ("ALDH2") deficiency, a genetic metabolic disorder. The ALDH2
deficiency product candidate was among assets acquired by Raptor from
Convivia, Inc. ("Convivia"), a California-based development-stage
pharmaceutical company.  Raptor also named Convivia's CEO and founder, Ted
Daley, as President of Bennu.
    
    (Logo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20071022/NYM074LOGO )
    
    The ALDH2 deficiency product candidate is a proprietary oral formulation
of a drug previously approved to treat another indication by intravenous
administration. Bennu plans to file an investigational new drug ("IND")
submission to the Food and Drug Administration ("FDA") for the initiation of a
Phase II clinical trial in 2008, subject to FDA approval of its IND.
    Through the establishment of Bennu, Raptor Pharmaceuticals Corp. will be
structured such that Raptor Pharmaceutical Inc. will drive research and
development efforts, including preclinical studies, while Bennu will execute
the clinical development of internal products and in-licensed candidates that
are: 1) new chemical entities in mid-to-late stage clinical development; 2)
currently approved drugs with potential efficacy in additional indications;
and 3) treatments that Bennu could repurpose or reformulate as potentially
more effective or convenient treatments for their currently approved
indications.
    "This corporate structure underscores Raptor's basic philosophy that
research and clinical development require different cultures and skills that
thrive optimally in their particular operating environments," stated Dr.
Christopher M. Starr, Raptor's Chief Executive Officer. "We believe we can
successfully develop clinical stage products without losing our focus and
passion for new drug discovery.  Our strategy ensures that the scientific and
drug discovery team at Raptor will continue to focus its energy on providing a
robust pipeline of new drug candidates. Bennu will provide a clinical
development infrastructure through which Raptor's drugs will transition as
they evolve into the clinic and enable the company to in-license additional
clinical stage products."
    "We are also very pleased to have Ted Daley join us as President of
Bennu," continued Dr. Starr. "Ted is an experienced senior manager and
seasoned entrepreneur with a successful track record of starting and building
successful companies.  His knowledge and experience with Convivia's products
will enable an efficient transition of the ALDH2 deficiency program from
Convivia to Bennu and will help to advance the program through the clinic."
    "I am excited to join the Raptor team," stated Mr. Daley.  "The
scientific depth of the staff at Raptor along with their experience in
bringing therapies to market, coupled with the clinical and regulatory
expertise we are assembling at Bennu, is a winning combination. The ALDH2
deficiency program will be a key test of our ability to acquire and execute
new clinical-phase programs."
    "We plan to focus on Asia as the first market for our ALDH2 deficiency
product candidate. The high prevalence of this unmet medical need among Asian
populations creates a particularly large commercial opportunity in this part
of the world," continued Mr. Daley.
    To optimize the development path of the ALDH2 deficiency product
candidate, Bennu has retained Pacific BioDevelopment, LLC, a drug development
consulting firm. Pacific BioDevelopment will advise on product formulation,
medical, clinical and regulatory execution related to the ALDH2 deficiency
program. "By selecting a known compound with a good safety profile in the
ALDH2 program, Bennu should be able to mitigate much of the typical initial
risk associated with new drug development.  They should be able to bring the
product to market relatively quickly," said Kevin Dwyer, managing partner of
Pacific BioDevelopment.
    Along with Mr. Daley, two of Convivia's advisors have joined Raptor's
advisory board: Robert P. Cook, a pharmaceutical marketing and business
development executive who co-founded ScinoPharm, a Taiwan-based manufacturer
of active pharmaceutical ingredients and Leaf Huang, distinguished professor
of molecular pharmaceutics at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.
    
    About Raptor
    
    Raptor Pharmaceuticals Corp.'s business consists of two segments: its
100% ownership of Raptor Pharmaceutical Inc. ("Raptor Inc."), a development
stage biotechnology company which bioengineers novel drug candidates and drug-
targeting platforms derived from the human receptor-associated protein ("RAP")
and related proteins; and its 100% ownership of Bennu Pharmaceuticals Inc., a
development stage company formed to develop clinical-stage products to
marketing approval and commercialization.
    Raptor Inc.'s preclinical programs target cancer, neurodegenerative
disorders, infectious diseases and osteoporosis. HepTide(TM) is designed to
utilize engineered RAP-based peptides conjugated to drugs to target their
delivery to the liver. In neurodegenerative diseases, engineered RAP peptides
called NeuroTrans(TM) are currently undergoing evaluation at Stanford
University in cell culture and preclinical models for their ability to enhance
the transport of molecules from blood to brain.  In an effort to protect its
novel approach, Raptor Inc. currently has five patent applications in review
in the U.S., and countries in Europe and Asia, as well as two provisional
patent applications licensed from Washington University.  In addition, Raptor
Inc. has recently submitted two new provisional patent applications in the
U.S., the first of which covers a new family of RAP peptides, with the second
application to further support and expand its coverage in specific disease
indications.
    Bennu's initial clinical program includes the treatment of aldehyde
dehydrogenase ("ALDH2") deficiency.   For additional information, please visit
www.raptorpharma.com.
    
    FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS
    
    This document contains forward-looking statements as that term is defined
in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements
relate to future events or our future results of operation or future financial
performance, including, but not limited to the following statements: Bennu's
ability to develop, acquire or in-license clinical-stage drug candidates;
Bennu's ability to  successfully develop the ALDH2 deficiency program; Bennu's
ability to file an IND and initiate a Phase II clinical program for ALDH2;
Raptor Inc.'s ability to drive research and development efforts; Bennu's
ability to execute clinical programs; Bennu's ability to develop already
approved drugs for additional indications or through repurposing of drugs;
Bennu's ability to transition the ALDH2 program successfully or into the
clinic; Raptor Inc.'s and Bennu's ability to enhance the future product
candidate pipeline; and Bennu's ability to develop drug candidates rapidly
into the clinic. These statements are only predictions and involve known and
unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, which may cause our actual
results to be materially different from these forward-looking statements.
Factors which may significantly change or prevent our forward looking
statements from fruition include that we may be unsuccessful in developing any
products or acquiring products; that our technology may not be validated as we
progress further and our methods may not be accepted by the scientific
community; that we are unable to retain or attract key employees whose
knowledge is essential to the development of our products; that unforeseen
scientific difficulties develop with our process; that our patents are not
sufficient to protect essential aspects of our technology; that competitors
may invent better technology; that our products may not work as well as hoped
or worse, that our products may harm recipients; and that we may not be able
to raise sufficient funds for development or working capital when we require
it. As well, our products may never develop into useful products and even if
they do, they may not be approved for sale to the public. We caution readers
not to place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements, which
speak only as of the date they were made. Certain of these risks,
uncertainties, and other factors are described in greater detail in our
filings from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the
"SEC"), which we strongly urge you to read and consider, including our
Registration Statement on Form SB-2, as amended, that was declared effective
on July 10, 2006, our annual report on Form 10-KSB and Form 10-KSB/A filed
with the SEC on November 22, 2006, and January 18, 2007, respectively and our
quarterly report Form 10-QSB filed with the SEC on June 28, 2007, all of which
are available free of charge on the SEC's web site at http://www.sec.gov.
Subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements attributable to us or
to persons acting on our behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by
the cautionary statements set forth in our reports filed with the SEC. We
expressly disclaim any intent or obligation to update any forward-looking
statements.

    For more information, please contact:

    
    The Ruth Group
    Sara Ephraim (investors)          Janine McCargo (media)
    (646) 536-7002                    (646) 536-7033
    sephraim@theruthgroup.com         jmccargo@theruthgroup.com
    




For further information:

For further information: Investors: Sara Ephraim, The Ruth Group, 
+1-646-536-7002, sephraim@theruthgroup.com, Media: Janine McCargo, 
+1-646-536-7033, jmccargo@theruthgroup.com Web Site:
http://www.raptorpharma.com

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RAPTOR PHARMACEUTICAL CORP.

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