Roche completes acquisition of ARIUS

    - Gains access to new screening platform for antibody therapeutics

    BASEL, Switzerland, Sept. 24 /CNW/ - Roche (SWX: ROG) announced today
that it has completed the acquisition of 100% of the issued and outstanding
shares and warrants of ARIUS Research (TSX: ARI). On September 19th, the
Ontario Superior Court, Canada, approved the Plan of Arrangement previously
approved by the security holders and announced in a press release dated 23
July 2008. All other conditions of closing have been satisfied.
    ARIUS is the developer of a proprietary antibody platform called
FunctionFIRST(TM), which rapidly identifies and selects antibodies based on
their functional ability to affect disease before progressing into clinical
development. This antibody generation engine has enabled ARIUS to develop a
pipeline of more than 500 antibody drug candidates. The FunctionFIRST(TM)
technology platform will allow Roche to further strengthen its developmental
portfolio, initially within the areas of oncology and inflammatory diseases
where this new technique offers potentially broad therapeutic applications.

    About Roche

    Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is one of the world's leading
research-focused healthcare groups in the fields of pharmaceuticals and
diagnostics. As the world's biggest biotech company and an innovator of
products and services for the early detection, prevention, diagnosis and
treatment of diseases, the Group contributes on a broad range of fronts to
improving people's health and quality of life. Roche is the world leader in
in-vitro diagnostics and drugs for cancer and transplantation, and is a market
leader in virology. It is also active in other major therapeutic areas such as
autoimmune diseases, inflammatory and metabolic disorders and diseases of the
central nervous system. In 2007 sales by the Pharmaceuticals Division totalled
36.8 billion Swiss francs, and the Diagnostics Division posted sales of
9.3 billion francs. Roche has R&D agreements and strategic alliances with
numerous partners, including majority ownership interests in Genentech and
Chugai, and invested over 8 billion Swiss francs in R&D in 2007. Worldwide,
the Group employs about 80,000 people. Additional information is available on
the Internet at

    All trademarks used or mentioned in this release are protected by law.

    %SEDAR: 00013708E

For further information:

For further information: Peter Sandbach, Roche Pharma Partnering, +41 61
688 3408,

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