UCB and Biogen Idec's Oral VLA-4 Antagonist Enters Phase II Development for Multiple Sclerosis



    BRUSSELS, BELGIUM & CAMBRIDGE, MASS. (USA), June 26 /CNW/ - UCB (Euronext
Brussels: UCB) and Biogen Idec (NASDAQ:   BIIB) today announced the initiation
of a Phase II study of CDP323 - an oral VLA-4 antagonist - under development
for relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (MS). The double-blind, randomized
Phase II study commenced this week with dosing of the first patient. The study
is designed to enroll over 200 patients with relapsing-remitting MS who have
failed earlier treatment with a beta-interferon. Last October the companies
entered an agreement to co-develop and co-commercialize this small molecule
compound.

    The trial compares the safety and efficacy of two doses of CDP323
monotherapy to placebo over a period of six months. This is the first time
that patients with MS will be exposed to CDP323. Approximately 50 medical
centers in Europe and the U.S. are expected to participate in this study. The
results of this Phase II study are expected by the end of 2008.

    "Multiple sclerosis affects more than a million people worldwide and so
far, no oral treatment has been available. An oral therapy would represent a
significant advance for patients as it could provide them with a new,
non-invasive option of drug delivery," said Professor Chris Polman, Professor
of Neurology, VU Medical Centre, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, Lead Investigator
for this study.

    About CDP323

    CDP323 is an orally active small molecule VLA-4 antagonist. The safety,
tolerability and pharmacokinetic profile of CDP323 have been evaluated in
healthy volunteers in three separate Phase I studies. Data from these studies
were reported at the 2006 European Committee for Treatment and Research in
Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS). The data from these early studies supports
further development of CDP323.

    About Multiple Sclerosis

    MS is a chronic disease of the central nervous system that affects
approximately 400,000 people in North America and more than one million people
worldwide. It is a disease that affects more women than men, with onset
typically occurring between 20 and 50 years of age. MS is caused by damage to
myelin, the protective sheath surrounding nerve fibers in the central nervous
system, which interferes with messages from the brain to the body. Symptoms of
MS may include vision problems, loss of balance, numbness, difficulty walking
and paralysis.

    About UCB

    UCB (www.ucb-group.com) is a leading global biopharmaceutical company
dedicated to the research, development and commercialisation of innovative
pharmaceutical and biotechnology products in the fields of central nervous
system disorders, allergy/respiratory diseases, immune and inflammatory
disorders and oncology. UCB focuses on securing a leading position in severe
disease categories. Employing over 8,500 people in over 40 countries, UCB
achieved revenue of 2.5 billion euro in 2006. UCB is listed on the Euronext
Brussels Exchange and its worldwide headquarters are located in Brussels,
Belgium.

    About Biogen Idec

    Biogen Idec creates new standards of care in therapeutic areas with high
unmet medical needs. Founded in 1978, Biogen Idec is a global leader in the
discovery, development, manufacturing, and commercialization of innovative
therapies. Patients in more than 90 countries benefit from Biogen Idec's
significant products that address diseases such as lymphoma, multiple
sclerosis, and rheumatoid arthritis. For product labeling, press releases and
additional information about the company, please visit www.biogenidec.com.

    UCB and Biogen Idec Safe Harbor

    This press release contains forward-looking statements regarding the
development of CDP323. Drug development involves a high degree of risk. Only a
small number of research and development programs result in commercialization
of a product. Factors which could cause actual results to differ materially
from UCB's and Biogen Idec's current expectations include the risk that the
companies may not be able to demonstrate the safety and efficacy of CDP323 at
each stage of the clinical trial process; technical hurdles relating to the
manufacture of CDP323 may be encountered; applicable regulatory standards may
not be met or regulatory authorities may fail to approve CDP323; and other
unexpected hurdles may be encountered.

    For more detailed information on the risks and uncertainties associated
with Biogen Idec's drug development activities, see the section entitled "Risk
Factors" in Biogen Idec's quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the fiscal quarter
ended March 31, 2007 which was filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission, as well as other periodic and current reports of Biogen Idec filed
with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Biogen Idec assumes no obligation
to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new
information, future events or otherwise.




For further information:

For further information: UCB Media and Investors: Jean-Christophe Donck,
+32 2 5599346 or Investors: Marieke Mohr, +32 2559 9264 or Biogen Idec Media:
Amy Brockelman Reilly, 617-914-6524 or Investors: Eric Hoffman, 617-679-2812

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