Orexo’s product NLA Nasal Spray shows excellent local tolerability in patients with rhinitis

Uppsala, 18th March, 2008 – Orexo has completed a study which confirms that the liposomes in Orexo’s product NLA Nasal Spray, can mask the irritating characteristics of cetirizine, which is used for treatment of rhinitis. The results of the study are an important step in Orexo’s process of developing and commercializing NLA Nasal Spray as a treatment for patients with rhinitis.

Cetirizine is one of the most sold treatments for rhinitis in the world, with annual sales amounting to USD 1.6 bn. The compound is however known to have side effects such as sedation. In order to avoid such side effects, cetirizine nasal spray has been tested by scientists, but this formulation has shown other side effects such as smarting pain in the nose.

Orexo has developed a unique and patented formulation of cetirizine and liposomes, NLA Nasal Spray. Earlier studies have shown that treatment with NLA Nasal Spray gives a rapid relief of rhinitis symptoms and is as effective as cetirizine in tablets. A newly completed study with rhinitis patients also shows that NLA Nasal Spray causes no side effects such as smarting pain in the nose.

In the study, 25 people were exposed to the pollen of their allergy during three periods consisting of five days each, setting off rhinitis. Starting with the last day of the pollen exposure, the group was treated in a blind test with NLA Nasal Spray (cetirizine and liposomes), cetirizine in liquid form or placebo treatment. There was no distinction in terms of local irritating characteristics in the nose between patients treated with NLA Nasal Spray and patients treated with placebo. The local irritating characteristics were also significantly lower than for the patients treated with cetirizine in liquid form, which immediately generated a strong reaction.

The conclusion of the study is that the liposomes in NLA Nasal Spray are able to mask the irritating characteristics of cetirizine.

”NLA Nasal Spray has the potential to become a valuable contribution in the treatment of patients suffering from rhinitis. The test results of the study that has been completed bear positive implications for these patients. Orexo’s primary objective is to promote existing collaborations and sign new license and development agreements. Therefore, the results of this study also form a valuable contribution to our process of finding a partner to develop and commercialize NLA Nasal Spray” says Torbjörn Bjerke, President and CEO of Orexo.

For more information, please contact:
Torbjörn Bjerke, President and CEO, Orexo AB
Tel: +46 (0)708-66 19 90
E-mail: torbjorn.bjerke@orexo.com

Claes Wenthzel, Executive Vice President & CFO, Orexo AB
Tel: +46 (0)18-780 88 44
E-mail: claes.wenthzel@orexo.com