Rigel Will Present Clinical Product Portfolio Update at J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference

Rigel Will Present Clinical Product Portfolio Update at J.P. Morgan Healthcare
                                  Conference

Earns $5.75M Milestone from AstraZeneca for Asthma Partnership

PR Newswire

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Jan. 10, 2014

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Jan. 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Rigel
Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: RIGL) today announced that James M. Gower, the
company's chairman and chief executive officer, will present updated product
development plans and a financial update at the upcoming 32^nd Annual J.P.
Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco on Thursday, January 16th at
9:00 a.m. PT (see webcast details below). Information will be included about
two fostamatinib clinical programs commencing in the first half of the year, a
Phase 3 clinical study in patients with immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP)
and a Phase 2 clinical study aimed at treating IgA nephropathy. Additionally,
Rigel announced that it has earned a milestone payment of $5.75 million from
AstraZeneca for the continued development of R256 in asthma.

"Rigel has four proprietary projects starting clinical studies in the next few
months, including our Phase 3 program with fostamatinib in ITP, and we expect
results from our Phase 2 study with R348 in dry eye later this year," said Mr.
Gower. "Our scientific strength gives breadth to our pipeline and 2014 will be
another busy year as we aim to develop treatments for patients who in some
indications have few therapeutic options."

Information about some of the programs Rigel will discuss at the Conference
follows.

Fostamatinib
In the past several years, Rigel has amassed a significant amount of data on
the mechanism of action, tolerability, safety and efficacy of fostamatinib,
its proprietary oral SYK inhibitor. In September 2013, the company announced
that it would evaluate this drug candidate in patients with ITP, an autoimmune
disease of the blood, which affects an estimated 100,000 Americans. Results of
Rigel's Phase 2 clinical study, published in Blood (volume 113, number 14),
showed that fostamatinib significantly increased the platelet counts of
patients including some who had failed currently available TPO agents and may
offer a treatment approach that targets the underlying cause of this disease.
Rigel plans to commence a Phase 3 study in this patient population in the
first half of the year.

Immunoglobulin A Nephropathy (IgAN) is an autoimmune disease that severely
affects the functioning of the kidneys. An estimated 12,000 Americans are
diagnosed with this type of glomerulonephritis each year, with 25% of its
victims eventually requiring dialysis and/or kidney transplantation over time.
IgAN is characterized by the deposition of IgA immune complexes in the
glomeruli of the kidneys leading to an inflammatory response and subsequent
tissue damage that ultimately disrupts the normal filtering function of the
kidneys.By inhibiting SYK in kidney cells, fostamatinib may block the
signaling of IgA immune complex receptors and arrest or slow destruction of
the glomeruli. Rigel expects to enter a Phase 2 study of fostamatinib in
patients with IgA nephropathy in the spring of 2014.

R348, JAK/SYK Inhibitor for Dry Eye
Approximately 4 million people in the U.S. suffer with dry eye disease,
including an estimated 25% of the patients with rheumatoid arthritis and
systemic lupus eryathematosus. Rigel initiated a Phase 2 clinical study to
evaluate the safety and potential efficacy of R348, a topical ophthalmic
JAK/SYK inhibitor, aimed at reducing the inflammation responsible for the
painful symptoms of this disease. Results of that study are expected in the
second half of 2014.

Additionally, according to an article published by the American Academy of
Ophthalmology, a significant number (22-80%) of patients with acute or chronic
graft vs. host disease (GvHD) develop a secondary incidence of dry eye
(keratoconjunctivitis sicca). In general, these patients are severely ill
and have a great medical need for a topical therapy that may better manage
their symptoms. In the second quarter of 2014, Rigel will initiate a Phase 2
study of R348 in patients with dry eye as a result of primary GvHD.

R118, AMPK Activator for Intermittent Claudication
Intermittent claudication (IC) refers to the muscle pain associated with
peripheral artery disease (PAD) caused by either atherosclerosis or
inflammation. Patients with IC have difficulty with simple activities, like
walking, and current therapies do not provide sufficient relief. IC affects
more than 5% of the population age 65 or older, but anyone with PAD may also
suffer the effects of IC. Preclinical evaluation of R118, an AMPK activator,
has shown it to be a central regulator of lipid and metabolic activity and
capable of increasing muscle endurance. Rigel plans to initiate a Phase 1
trial of R118 in patients with IC in the first half of 2014.

Partnerships
In addition to the five clinical programs noted above, Rigel also has products
in varying stages of preclinical and clinical development with three
pharmaceutical partners.

In June 2012, Rigel and AstraZeneca announced an exclusive worldwide license
agreement for the global development and commercialization of R256, Rigel's
inhaled JAK inhibitor as a potential treatment for asthma. AstraZeneca is
responsible for the development of R256. It's continued efforts to bring R256
into first-in-human studies triggered the $5.75 million milestone payment to
Rigel.

Partners BerGenBio and Daiichi Sankyo are developing Rigel's Axl Kinase
inhibitor and a Ubiquitin Ligase inhibitor, respectively, for their potential
safety and efficacy in treating various cancers. Both of these molecules are
currently in Phase 1 clinical development.

Financial Update
Rigel ended 2013 with approximately $212 million in cash, cash equivalents,
and available for sale securities. Rigel expects to end 2014 with cash, cash
equivalents, and available for sale securities in excess of $132 million,
which is sufficient to fund its operations through the second quarter of 2016.

Webcast details
To access the live audio webcast or the subsequent archived recording, log on
to www.rigel.com.Please connect to Rigel's website several minutes prior to
the start of the live webcast to ensure adequate time for any software
download that may be necessary.

About Rigel (www.rigel.com)
Rigel Pharmaceuticals, Inc.is a clinical-stage drug development company that
discovers and develops novel, small-molecule drugs for the treatment of
inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, as well as muscle disorders. Rigel's
pioneering research focuses on intracellular signaling pathways and related
targets that are critical to disease mechanisms. The Company currently has
five product candidates in development: fostamatinib, an oral SYK inhibitor
expected to enter Phase 3 clinical trials for ITP and a Phase 2 clinical trial
for IgA nephropathy in the first half of 2014; R348, a topical JAK/SYK
inhibitor currently in Phase 2 clinical trials for dry eye; R118, an AMPK
activator entering Phase 1 in early 2014; and two oncology product candidates
in Phase 1 development with partners BerGenBio andDaiichi Sankyo.

This press release contains "forward-looking" statements, including, without
limitation, statements related to development plans, the timing of planned
clinical trials and results, milestone payments, and Rigel's ability to fund
and maintain its current development plans into 2016. Any statements
contained in this press release that are not statements of historical fact may
be deemed to be forward-looking statements. Words such as "planned," "will,"
"may," "expect," and similar expressions are intended to identify these
forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based on
Rigel's current expectations and inherently involve significant risks and
uncertainties. Actual results and the timing of events could differ materially
from those anticipated in such forward looking statements as a result of these
risks and uncertainties, which include, without limitation, the availability
of resources to develop Rigel's product candidates, Rigel's need for
additional capital in the future to sufficiently fund Rigel's operations and
research, the uncertain timing of completion of and the success of clinical
trials, market competition, risks associated with and Rigel's dependence on
Rigel's corporate partnerships, as well as other risks detailed from time to
time in Rigel's reports filed with theSecurities and Exchange Commission,
including its Quarterly Report on Form10-Q for thequarter ended September
30, 2013. Rigel does not undertake any obligation to update forward-looking
statements and expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to release
publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained
herein.

Contact: Raul Rodriguez
Phone: 650.624.1302
Email: invrel@rigel.com

Media Contact: Susan C. Rogers, Rivily, Inc.
Phone: 650.430.3777
Email: susan@rivily.com

SOURCE Rigel Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Website: http://www.rigel.com
 
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