DURECT to Present Preliminary Phase II Clinical Data for Cohort 3 for Its Post-Operative Pain Relief Depot at American College of Surgeons Conference

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CUPERTINO, Calif., Sept 21, 2005 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX News Network/ — DURECT Corporation
(Nasdaq: DRRX), an emerging specialty pharmaceutical company, announced today
it plans to present preliminary cohort 3 clinical data from its Phase II study
for DURECT’s post-operative pain relief depot, SABER(TM)-Bupivacaine, during
the American College of Surgeons Conference in San Francisco, CA, October 17th
& 19th. DURECT recently announced the completion of dosing in the third and
final cohort of the Phase II dose escalation study in hernia patients in
Australia for, SABER(TM)-Bupivacaine. The Company completed enrollment of
60 patients in cohort 3, which will be presented in conjunction with cohort
1 and cohort 2 data. SABER-Bupivacaine is based on DURECT’s patented SABER
delivery technology and is intended to be administered around the surgical
site after surgery to provide 3 days or more of local analgesia.

“We are excited with the progress of this program in clinical development
and we look forward to receiving valuable input from some of the leading
surgeons in the U.S. We believe that our post-operative pain relief depot, if
approved, has the potential to reduce opioid consumption and their associated
side effects and hospital stays for patients that undergo surgery each day,”
said James E. Brown, President and CEO of DURECT.

About DURECT Corporation

DURECT Corporation is an emerging specialty pharmaceutical company focused
on the development of pharmaceutical systems based on its proprietary drug
delivery platform technologies that treat chronic and episodic debilitating
diseases and enable biotechnology products. These platform technologies
include the SABER(TM) Delivery System (a patented and versatile depot
injectable useful for protein and small molecule delivery), the ORADUR(TM)
sustained release oral gel-cap technology (an oral sustained release
technology with several potential abuse deterrent properties), the DURIN(TM)
Biodegradable Implant (drug-loaded implant system), the TRANSDUR(TM)
transdermal technology and the MICRODUR(TM) Biodegradable Microparticulates
(microspheres injectable system). DURECT also collaborates with pharmaceutical
companies to develop and commercialize proprietary and enhanced pharmaceutical
products based on its technologies. DURECT has five disclosed on-going
development programs of which four are in collaboration with pharmaceutical
partners. Additional information about DURECT is available at www.www.durect.com.

trademarks of DURECT Corporation. Other referenced trademarks belong to their
respective owners.

DURECT Forward-Looking Statement

The statements in this press release regarding DURECT’s products in
development, anticipated product benefits, and clinical trial results are
forward-looking statements involving risks and uncertainties that can cause
actual results to differ materially from those in such forward-looking
statements. Potential risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to,
DURECT’s ability to successfully complete clinical trials, complete the
design, development, and manufacturing process development of the product
candidate, obtain product and manufacturing approvals from regulatory agencies
and manufacture and commercialize the product candidate, as well as
marketplace acceptance of the product candidate. Further information regarding
these and other risks is included in DURECT’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q
for the quarter ended June 30, 2005 filed with the SEC on August 4, 2005 under
the heading “Factors that may affect future results.”


Schond L. Greenway, Executive Director, Investor Relations and Strategic Planning, of
DURECT Corporation, +1-408-777-1417


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