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ALVINE PHARMACEUTICALS ANNOUNCES EQUITY INVESTMENT BY ABBOTT BIOTECH VENTURES INC.

SAN CARLOS, Calif. – May 26, 2010 - Alvine Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a privately held clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing therapeutics for autoimmune/inflammatory diseases, today announced that Abbott Biotech Ventures Inc., has joined Alvine’s current investors:  Interwest Partners, Panorama Capital, Prospect Venture Partners, Sofinnova Ventures, Black River Asset Management and Flagship Ventures in the company’s Series A Extension financing.  The terms of the investment were not disclosed.

“We are very pleased to add Abbott as an investor in Alvine,” said Abhay Joshi, Ph.D., Alvine’s President and Chief Executive Officer.  “With the support of all our investors, we are committed to developing ALV003, our lead product candidate, as a novel therapeutic agent with the potential to treat celiac disease.”  

About Alvine

Alvine Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a privately held biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing and commercializing therapeutics for autoimmune/inflammatory diseases.  Alvine’s lead product candidate, ALV003, is being developed as a potential treatment for patients with celiac disease.  For additional information about the company, please visit www.alvinepharma.com.

About Celiac Disease

Celiac disease is the most common hereditary autoimmune disease with prevalence estimated to be as high as 1-2% in the U.S. and E.U.  Intestinal inflammation in celiac disease is triggered by the ingestion of gluten in genetically susceptible individuals.  Gluten is a protein found naturally in wheat, rye, and barley, and is one of the most common and nutritionally significant ingredients in the human diet.   Patients with celiac disease mount an immune response to gluten and gluten fragments, resulting in systemic immune-mediated damage in the gut and other organs.  Gluten ingestion can be associated with symptoms such as nausea, diarrhea, constipation and rash.  Complications of celiac disease can include osteoporosis, anemia, dermatitis, weight loss, diabetes, autoimmune diseases, malignancies, and peripheral and central nervous system conditions including depression.  The only available option for individuals diagnosed with celiac disease today is a life-long adherence to a strict gluten-free diet, which is difficult to follow.

About ALV003

ALV003 is an orally administered mixture of two recombinant proteases engineered to degrade gluten into non-immunogenic fragments, by targeting the glutamine and proline residues that are common in gluten.   ALV003 consists of a glutamine specific cysteine protease (EP-B2) and a proline specific prolyl endopeptidase (PEP).

Contact: 

Kirk Essenmacher M.D., M.B.A.

Phone: (650) 596-2434

Vice President of Marketing, Corporate and Strategic Development