Karo Bio and GPC Biotech Successfully Develop Ten Assays for Novel Anibacterial Targets

MUNICH, Germany, Feb. 6, 2002 (PRIMEZONE) -- Karo Bio USA, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Karo Bio AB, and GPC Biotech AG (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: GPC) today announced that their technology collaboration has been successfully concluded in a period of only 15 months with the development of 10 BioKey(r) molecular probe assays for selected novel genomics-derived antibacterial targets proprietary to GPC Biotech. GPC Biotech is using these BioKey(r) molecular probe assays to develop high-throughput drug discovery screens (HTS) and has already successfully concluded a HTS for one assay. Karo Bio has received undisclosed milestone payments for the completion of these BioKey(r) molecular probe assays.

The 10 BioKey(r) molecular probe assays provide GPC Biotech with a drug discovery engine to identify lead compounds with potent antibacterial activity with the goal of developing novel, more effective broad- spectrum antibiotics. GPC Biotech retains all commercialization rights and Karo Bio will receive royalties on developed compounds or out- licensing.

"It has been a pleasure working with GPC Biotech. This collaboration has proven the power of the BioKey(r) assay technology to rapidly develop assays for the unique targets discovered and validated by GPC Biotech using their innovative genomic tools," said Dana Fowlkes, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of Karo Bio.

"We are delighted with the results generated by Karo Bio which contributed to a significant advance of our antibacterial programs. The combination of GPC Biotech's genomic approaches and Karo Bio's assay development technologies, now truly enables new drug discovery programs based on an entirely novel set of antibacterial targets. We will now focus on making the most of these opportunities to discover and develop antibacterial compounds that will meet the needs of the future," commented Sebastian Meier-Ewert, Ph.D. Senior Vice President, Research of GPC Biotech.

The proprietary BioKey(r) technology is used in drug discovery for validation and screening of a wide variety of targets, including those that are difficult or impossible to screen by traditional high throughput methods. The technology uses surrogate ligands based upon Karo Bio's proprietary BioKey(r) molecular probe technology to develop assays for the quick identification of small molecule lead compounds that bind to the pharmacologically active sites of the target proteins. This innovative technology is used for Karo Bio's internal nuclear receptor drug discovery programs and collaborative out-licensing agreements with pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.

The economic projections and forward-looking statements contained in this document relate to future facts. Such projections and forward- looking statements are subject to risks which cannot be foreseen and which are beyond the control of GPC Biotech AG. GPC Biotech AG is therefore not in a position to make any representation as to the accuracy of economic projections and forward-looking statements or their impact on the financial situation of GPC Biotech AG or the market in the shares of GPC Biotech AG.


Karo Bio has operations in Sweden and the United States. The Company employs 140 people. Karo Bio has been listed on the Stockholm stock exchange (Reuters: KARO.ST) since 1998 and maintains a leading position in the field of drug discovery focused on nuclear receptors. Nuclear receptors are validated drug targets for a number of clinical indications and the Company uses proprietary technologies for the development of novel and improved therapies for major markets. Karo Bio has 400 patent cases including 128 granted patents.

Karo Bio has drug discovery programs in several therapeutic areas including men and women's health care, metabolic disorders such as obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, dermatology and ophthalmology.

Karo Bio collaborates with major pharmaceutical companies for development of products and marketing. In these partnerships Karo Bio receives upfront payments, R&D funding, milestone payments as well as royalties on net sales when products reach the market.

Karo Bio has strategic pharmaceutical drug discovery partnerships with Abbott Laboratories, American Home Products, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Merck & Co.

GPC Biotech AG is a genomics- and proteomics-driven drug discovery company focused on applying a number of proprietary genomic, proteomic and drug discovery technologies to accelerate the identification and validation of novel drug targets for development of mechanism-based drugs in oncology, infectious diseases and immunology. GPC Biotech has leading cell cycle expertise and a broad intellectual property position. Drug discovery alliance partners include: Aventis Pharma (PAVE.PSE), Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH, the Altana AG (ALT.FSE) pharmaceuticals group Byk Gulden, Cell Genesys, Inc. (CEGE.NAS), MorphoSys AG (MOR.FSE) and Karo Bio USA (KARO.SSE). GPC Biotech AG is headquartered in Martinsried/Munich (Germany) with two wholly owned US subsidiaries in Waltham/Boston, MA and in Princeton, NJ. For further information, please visit the corporate website at: http://www.gpc-biotech.com.

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