Labopharm Signs Global Licensing Agreement With Aventis Pharma

SEPTEMBER 20, 2001  
Labopharm Signs Global Licensing Agreement With Aventis 
TO: News directors, assignment editors, journalists and  
columnists: business and finance news   
Labopharm Inc. announced today a definitive worldwide licensing  
agreement with Aventis Pharma (Aventis), and another  
pharmaceutical company whose name was not disclosed, to develop,  
globally, new formulations for one of Aventis's core strategic  
brands that incorporates Labopharm's controlled release  
technology, Contramid(R).  The brand had global annual sales for  
the year 2000 in excess of US$650 million.   
Under the terms of the agreement which will last for the life of  
the patents, Labopharm will receive milestone payments following  
the successful completion of clinical studies, and royalty  
payments on product sales for the newly formulated products.  With 
the feasibility and formulation studies successfully completed and 
initial technology transfer and manufacture of clinical supplies  
near completion, the clinical studies are planned to begin within  
the next three months.  Aventis has also initiated the process of  
full technology transfer to a global manufacturing unit in order  
to prepare for production.   
In addition, under this agreement, the parties have entered into a 
further arrangement whereby Labopharm has granted exclusive  
licenses to Aventis and the other pharmaceutical company to  
utilize Labopharm technology in a defined therapeutic area.  In  
return, Labopharm has obtained the right to formulate further  
development compounds for Aventis and the other pharmaceutical  
"Aventis is pleased to enter this collaborative agreement with  
Labopharm and we look forward to the potential contribution to our 
business that will hopefully emerge as a result of this project,"  
said Thomas Hofstaetter, Aventis' Senior Vice-President, Corporate 
"The completion of this agreement offers Labopharm the potential  
for significant revenues in the foreseeable future," said James  
Howard-Tripp, President and CEO of Labopharm.  "Both Aventis and  
ourselves are committed to developing these products as rapidly as 
possible.  Feasibility and formulation studies were successfully  
completed on schedule, proving the viability and efficacy of our  
controlled release technology, Contramid(R).  Moreover, our  
continued strategic partnership with Aventis may yield additional  
opportunities for Labopharm," he added.   
About Aventis   
Aventis (NYSE: AVE), a world leader in pharmaceuticals and  
agriculture, is dedicated to improving life through the discovery  
and development of innovative products.  In 2000, Aventis  
generated group sales of Euros 22.3 billion and employed around  
92,500 people in its Pharma and Agriculture businesses.  Aventis  
announced in November 2000 that it intends to focus on  
pharmaceuticals and plans to divest its activities in agriculture. 
 Aventis was launched in December 1999 through the merger of  
Hoechst AG of Germany and Rhone-Poulenc SA of France.  Corporate  
headquarters are in Strasbourg, France.  For more information  
about Aventis, please visit   
About Labopharm  
Labopharm Product Pipeline and Agreements:  
In addition to the above mentioned licensing agreement with Aventis 
and the other pharmaceutical company, key products in Labopharm's 
pipeline include:  
* A once-a-day formulation of Tramadol, a chronic pain drug which 
  generates worldwide sales of approximately US $1 billion;  
* A second major Aventis Pharmaceuticals drug, which cannot be 
  identified for competitive reasons, with significant brand name 
  sales in a multi-billion dollar market; 
* Xopenex(TM) (levalbuterol HCI), a solid, orally-dosed (tablet) 
  bronchodilator for the treatment of asthma and those who experience 
  chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), being jointly 
  developed with Sepracor Inc. of Massachusetts; and 
* Oxybutynin, a urinary incontinence drug in Phase I co-development 
  with an international pharmaceutical company.  
Labopharm is an international pharmaceutical company specializing  
in the development of drugs that deploy an advanced  
controlled-release technology. Contramid(R), Labopharm's  
proprietary technology can be applied to a wide variety of drugs  
in solid, oral dosage form, improving their administration and  
performance.  Labopharm's technology is used to develop products  
that are either bio-equivalent to existing, branded products or to 
create newly branded products with greater therapeutic benefits  
made possible by an improved delivery profile.  Labopharm is  
listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol DDS.  
For more information about Labopharm please visit   
This press release contains forward-looking statements, which  
reflect the Corporation's current expectations regarding future  
events.  The forward-looking statements involve risks and  
uncertainties.  Actual events could differ materially from those  
projected herein and depend on a number of factors, including the  
successful and timely completion of clinical studies, the  
uncertainties related to the regulatory process and the  
commercialization of the drug thereafter.  Investors should  
consult the Corporation's ongoing quarterly filings and annual  
reports for additional information on risks and uncertainties  
relating to these forward-looking statements.  The reader is  
cautioned not to rely on these forward-looking statements.  The  
Corporation disclaims any obligation to update these  
forward-looking statements.   
Conference Call & Live Webcast   
The Company will hold a conference call on Thursday, September 20, 
2001 at 9:00 a.m. (E.S.T.).  To access the call, interested  
participants should dial 416-695-5801 or 800-478-9326.  The  
conference call will also be webcast live at and and archived for 90 days.  Please  
connect to the website at least 15 minutes prior to the conference 
call to ensure adequate download time for any software that may be 
required to hear the webcast.  A telephone re-broadcast of the  
call will be available until midnight on September 27, 2001.  To  
access the re-broadcast, dial 416-695-5800 or 800-408-3053 and  
enter the access code 913-941.   
Minimum requirements to listen to the live broadcast are: a  
computer with speakers, the RealPlayer software, downloadable free 
from, and an active  
connection to the Internet.  If you experience problems listening  
to the broadcast, go to and click the  
"test" tab.   
Labopharm Inc. 
James R. Howard-Tripp 
President and CEO 
(450) 686-1017 
Nathalie Bourque 
(514) 843-7171  
-0- Sep/20/2001 10:01 GMT
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