SAVIENT PHARMACEUTICALS AND JIM BELUSHI LAUNCH "CHECK OUT YOUR GOUT" EDUCATIONAL CAMPAIGN
- – Belushi Encourages People to Get Serious About Gout
- – Campaign Highlights Severe Form of the Condition, Refractory Chronic Gout or RCG
- – Launch Timed to One of the Largest Annual Rheumatology Meetings, Held This Year In Belushi’s Hometown of Chicago
EAST BRUNSWICK, N.J., November 7, 2011 – Savient Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: SVNT) and Jim Belushi today announced the launch of a new educational campaign, "Check Out Your Gout," to raise awareness about gout and a severe form of the condition known as refractory chronic gout, or RCG. As an actor, singer and performer, Belushi's roles range from dramatic to light-hearted, but when it comes to his gout – he is nothing but serious. The "Check Out Your Gout" campaign aims to encourage people to get serious about gout and take action to learn more about the condition. Launched from Chicago, Belushi's hometown and location of the 2011 Annual Meeting of the American College of Rheumatology taking place this week, the campaign will feature broadcast and online videos, as well as an educational website, CheckOutYourGout.com.
Gout is a debilitating form of arthritis affecting approximately eight million Americans. Triggered by high levels of uric acid in the blood, gout causes pain and swelling in the joints and can result in deposits of uric acid crystals under the skin, called tophi. RCG occurs when uric acid levels remain high and symptoms persist despite available conventional therapies. RCG symptoms may be debilitating, due to the frequency and severity of episodes, the recurrent painful gout attacks and the disfigurement associated with the condition.
"When I first developed gout, I didn't want to do anything about it. I thought I could tough it out; but when the pain became too unbearable for me to perform on stage, I saw a rheumatologist and got my gout under control," said Belushi. "I am taking part in the 'Check Out Your Gout' campaign to let people know that gout is a very painful condition that should be taken seriously, and to tell those who are or may be affected by gout or RCG to check it out and work with a doctor to identify the best management plan."
As part of the campaign, Jim will share his personal experience with gout through national and local media appearances and additional programming planned for next year.
"Gout continues to be widely misperceived and overlooked," said Louis Ferrari, Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations North America, Savient Pharmaceuticals. "Our hope is that through the 'Check Out Your Gout' campaign Savient, together with Jim, can increase awareness and understanding of gout and RCG."
To get the real facts about gout and RCG visit: CheckOutYourGout.com.
ABOUT REFRACTORY CHRONIC GOUT
Gout is a painful, debilitating form of arthritis and affects approximately eight million people in the U.S. alone. A significant sub-population of gout patients, approximately 120,000, are burdened with a difficult-to-treat form of the condition, known as refractory chronic gout (RCG). Symptoms of gout are caused by the body's response to the presence of uric acid crystals in the joints and surrounding tissue, which form when uric acid levels in the blood are elevated (a condition called hyperuricemia). The longer hyperuricemia persists, the higher the risk of developing gout. Symptoms of gout may include painful flares, pain or swelling in the joints (known as "gouty arthritis") or deposits of uric acid crystals under the skin, called "tophi." In cases of RCG, these symptoms may have a major influence on patient health-related quality of life due to the frequency and severity of episodes, the recurrent pain and the disfigurement associated with this condition. Although most cases of gout can be controlled with conventional urate-lowering therapy, when uric acid levels remain high and symptoms persist despite treatment efforts, chronic gout may be defined as refractory.
ABOUT SAVIENT PHARMACEUTICALS, INC.
Savient Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a specialty biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing KRYSTEXXA® (pegloticase) for the treatment of chronic gout in adult patients refractory to conventional therapy. Savient has exclusively licensed worldwide rights to the technology related to KRYSTEXXA and its uses from Duke University ("Duke") and Mountain View Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ("MVP"). Duke developed the recombinant uricase enzyme and MVP developed the PEGylation technology used in the manufacture of KRYSTEXXA. MVP and Duke have been granted U.S. and foreign patents disclosing and claiming the licensed technology and, in addition, Savient owns or co-owns U.S. and foreign patents and patent applications, which collectively form a broad portfolio of patents covering the composition, manufacture and methods of use and administration of KRYSTEXXA. Savient also manufactures and supplies Oxandrin® (oxandrolone tablets, USP) CIII in the U.S. For more information, please visit the Company's website at www.savient.com.
All statements other than statements of historical facts included in this press release are forward-looking statements that are subject to certain risks, trends and uncertainties that could cause actual results and achievements to differ materially from those expressed in such statements. These risks, trends and uncertainties are in some instances beyond our control. Words such as "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "plan," "will" and other similar expressions identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words. In particular, any statements regarding the safety and efficacy of KRYSTEXXA, status of our KRYSTEXXA marketing efforts and additional plans related thereto, market demand and reimbursement for KRYSTEXXA, our view of the refractory chronic gout (RCG) market size, and our market expansion plans including our MAA filing before the EMA are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements involve substantial risks and uncertainties and are based on our assessment and interpretation of the currently available data and information, current expectations, assumptions, estimates and projections about our business and the biopharmaceutical and specialty pharmaceutical industries in which we operate. Important factors that may affect our ability to achieve the matters addressed in these forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, our ability to commercialize KRYSTEXXA; the risk that the market for KRYSTEXXA is smaller than we have anticipated; our ability to retain the personnel; our reliance on third parties to manufacture KRYSTEXXA; competition from existing therapies and therapies that are currently under development, including therapies that are significantly less expensive than KRYSTEXXA; our ability to gain market acceptance for KRYSTEXXA among physicians, patients, health care payers and others in the medical community; whether we are able to obtain financing, if needed; economic, political and other risks associated with foreign operations; risks of maintaining protection for our intellectual property; risks of an adverse determination in intellectual property litigation; and risks associated with stringent government regulation of the biopharmaceutical industry and other important factors set forth more fully in our reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, to which investors are referred for further information. We may not actually achieve the plans, intentions or expectations disclosed in our forward-looking statements, and you should not place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of publication of this press release. Actual results or events could differ materially from the plans, intentions and expectations disclosed in the forward-looking statements that we make. Our forward-looking statements do not reflect the potential impact of any future acquisitions, mergers, dispositions, joint ventures or investments that we may make. We do not have a policy of updating or revising forward-looking statements and, except as required by law, assume no obligation to update any forward-looking statements.
Savient Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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