SOURCE: NICOX

November 22, 2005 02:00 ET

NicOx announces Pfizer's exercise of option to develop lead compound from ophthalmology collaboration

Sophia-Antipolis cedex -- (MARKET WIRE) -- November 22, 2005 -- November 22, 2005. Sophia Antipolis, France. www.nicox.com

NicOx S.A. (Eurolist: NICOX) today announced that Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) has selected a development candidate in its collaboration with NicOx, which is focused on novel nitric oxide-donating compounds in ophthalmology. Accordingly, Pfizer has exercised its option to acquire an exclusive worldwide license to the proprietary NicOx compounds covered by the agreement. NicOx will receive a E2M payment from Pfizer.

Michele Garufi, Chairman and CEO of NicOx, commented: "We are delighted that our joint research collaboration with Pfizer has resulted in the successful identification of a lead candidate for development in only 15 months. This is a significant achievement given the very high rate of attrition for compounds in research and demonstrates our technology's ability to generate robust drug candidates."

Pfizer and NicOx were jointly responsible for this research project, in which a number of nitric oxide-donating compounds were synthesized and submitted to an extensive series of preclinical tests. Several compounds successfully fulfilled a number of key criteria and demonstrated superior activity, compared to reference compounds, in established in vivo eye disease models. Pfizer has selected a candidate for development and will fund and be responsible for all future work on this compound.

The research, option, development and licensing agreement between Pfizer and NicOx was signed in August 2004 and granted Pfizer an option to acquire a worldwide license to the nitric oxide-donating compounds under study, with exclusive development and commercialisation rights. Including the payment announced today, NicOx will have received E4 million from Pfizer in connection with this agreement and stands to receive a further E33 million, plus royalties, if the collaboration results in the successful commercial development of a product.

NicOx S.A. is an emerging pharmaceutical company involved in the research and development of nitric oxide-donating drugs with superior efficacy and safety profiles in the inflammation, pain and cardiovascular therapeutic areas.

NicOx seeks to commercialize its products through partnerships and co-development agreements where it maintains future marketing rights for specialist products.

NicOx S.A. (Bloomberg: COX:FP, Reuters: NCOX.LN), headquartered in Sophia-Antipolis, France, is a public company listed on the Eurolist of Euronext Paris (segment: Next Economy).

The elements included in this communication may contain forward looking statements subject to certain risks and uncertainties. Actual results of the company may differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements because of different risks factors described in the company's document de reference.

CONTACTS: NicOx:

Karl Hanks - Manager of Corporate Relations and Market Analysis

Tel +33 (0)497 15 22 03 - hanks@nicox.com

www.nicox.com

Investors in the United States - Burns McClellan:

Lisa Burns - lburns@burnsmc.com /

Laura Siino - lsiino@burnsmc.com - Tel +1 212 213 0006

Financial Dynamics:

Jonathan Birt -Tel +1 212 850 56 34 - jbirt@fd-us.com /

Julia Phillips -Tel +44 (0)20 7831 3113 - julia.phillips@fd.com

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