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Access Pharmaceuticals Signs Merger Agreement to Acquire MacroChem Corp.

Thursday, July 10, 2008 General News J E 4
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DALLAS, July 10 Access Pharmaceuticals, Inc.(OTC Bulletin Board: ACCP) and MacroChem Corporation(OTC Bulletin Board: MACM) announced today that they had signed a definitivemerger agreement providing for Access to acquire MacroChem through theissuance of 2.5 million shares of Access Pharmaceuticals' common stock.MacroChem's product portfolio includes two clinical stage oncology products,4-thio Ara-C, which is a next generation nucleoside analogue licensed fromSouthern Research Institute and sodium phenylbutyrate, which is licensed fromthe NIH and is currently partnered with Access Pharmaceuticals. MacroChem'sportfolio of late stage clinical drug candidates includes Pexiganan, a noveltopical anti-infective for the treatment of diabetic foot infection that hasalready completed two Phase 3 clinical trials; EcoNail, a novel topicaltreatment for onychomycosis that is currently in a Phase 2 clinical trial.Macrochem also has two proprietary dermatology drug platforms, SEPA(R) andMacroDerm. The acquisition is expected to close in Q3 2008.

"The acquisition of MacroChem brings multiple late-stage clinical drugcandidates into the Access pipeline, some of which are further along thanAccess' current assets," stated Jeffrey B. Davis, Access' President and CEO."We are currently active in partnering and out-licensing discussions, andMacroChem's dermatology assets will be added to that partnering effort. Theoncology assets are highly synergistic with the oncology development effortsongoing at Access, and we look forward to the opportunity to move them alongand monetize those assets through additional partnering activities."

"With the precarious state of the financial markets adding furtherchallenges for microcap biopharmaceutical companies, we believe the strategiccombination with Access is a very positive step forward for the continueddevelopment of MacroChem's product candidates," stated Robert J. DeLuccia,Chairman of MacroChem Corporation. "We are pleased to work with Access toassure an orderly transition and believe that this is the best strategycurrently available to maximize value for our shareholders."

About MacroChem:

MacroChem is a specialty pharmaceutical company that develops and seeks tocommercialize pharmaceutical products. Product candidates in our clinicaldevelopment portfolio are: pexiganan, EcoNail(R) and SR9025 which was recentlyacquired. Pexiganan, a novel topical anti-infective for the treatment ofdiabetic foot infection, was recently in-licensed and has already completedtwo Phase 3 trials. EcoNail is a topically applied SEPA-based econazolelacquer for the treatment of onychomycosis, a condition commonly known as nailfungus. SR9025 is a new generation nucleoside analog which has demonstratedboth pre-clinical and clinical activity in certain cancers.

On April 23, 2008, MacroChem announced it acquired Virium PharmaceuticalsInc. Virium was a non-public, development stage company whose businessinvolved development and commercialization of novel therapeutics with a focusin oncology. By acquiring Virium, MarcoChem obtained a group of productcandidates targeted for development and commercialization in several oncologyor oncology-related indications. These opportunities involve compounds thatMacroChem believes show promising late-stage, pre-clinical and early clinicaldata.

About ProLindac(TM):

ProLindac is a novel DACH platinum prodrug which has been shown to beactive in a wide variety of solid tumors in both preclinical models and inhuman trials. Access believes that ProLindac's unique molecular designpotentially could eliminate some of the toxic side effects seen in thecurrently marketed DACH platinum, Eloxatin, which has sales in excess of $2billion.

About Access:

Access Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is an emerging biopharmaceutical company thatdevelops and commercializes propriety products for the tr
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