AVANIR Announces it has been Selected for Addition to the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index

San Diego, Calif., November 16, 2006 -- Avanir Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: AVNR) announced today that the Company has been selected for addition to the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index, which will be effective at the market's opening on Monday, November 20, 2006.     

 

The NASDAQ Biotechnology Index was launched in 1993 and includes securities of NASDAQ-listed companies that meet minimum requirements, including market value, average daily share volume, and seasoning as a public company, among other criteria.  Avanir's inclusion was based on the measurement of these criteria as of November 10, 2006 and inclusion will be reassessed semiannually starting in May 2007.  The index is ranked on a semi-annual basis in May and November and serves as the basis for the iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index Fund (Amex: IBB). For more information about the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index, including eligibility criteria, visit www.nasdaq.com.  

 

About Avanir

Avanir Pharmaceuticals is focused on developing, acquiring and commercializing novel therapeutic products for the treatment of chronic diseases.  Avanir's products and product candidates address therapeutic markets that include the central nervous system, cardiovascular disorders, inflammation and infectious diseases.  Avanir currently markets FazaClo®, the only orally-disintegrating formulation of clozapine for the management of severely ill schizophrenic patients who fail to respond adequately to standard schizophrenic drug treatments.  FazaClo is also indicated for reducing the risk of suicidal behavior in patients with schizophrenic or schizoaffective disorder.  For full prescribing information and important safety information regarding FazaClo, please visit www.fazaclo.com.  Zenvia™, Avanir's lead product candidate for the treatment of involuntary emotional expression disorder (IEED), is the subject of an approvable letter from the FDA and future development plans for this product candidate are under consideration.  The Company does not know at this time what impact, if any, the ongoing discussions with the FDA for IEED may have on the development of Zenvia for other indications.  Additionally, Avanir has completed the patient recruitment in a Phase III clinical trial with Zenvia as a potential treatment for patients with painful diabetic neuropathy.  Avanir has active collaborations with two international pharmaceutical companies: Novartis International Pharmaceutical Ltd. for the treatment of inflammatory disease and AstraZeneca for the treatment of cardiovascular disease.  The Company's first commercialized product, abreva®, is marketed in North America by GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare and is the leading over-the-counter product for the treatment of cold sores.  Further information about Avanir can be found at www.avanir.com.

 

Forward Looking Statement

Statements in this press release that are not historical facts, including statements that are preceded by, followed by, or that include such words as "estimate," "intend," "anticipate," "believe," "plan," or "expect," or similar statements, are forward-looking statements that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the future results expressed or implied by such statements.   There can be no assurance that the Company will continue the clinical development of Zenvia after its planned meeting with the FDA or that Zenvia will receive FDA regulatory approval for any indication.  There can also be no assurance that the FDA will not require additional evidence of Zenvia's safety and/or efficacy, notwithstanding the existence of an SPA for the Company's neuropathic pain clinical trials.  If regulatory approval is received, there can be no assurance that AVANIR will be able to market Zenvia successfully. Final review decisions made by the FDA and other regulatory agencies concerning clinical trial results are often unpredictable and outside the influence and control of the Company. Additionally, there can be no assurance that the Company will continue to meet the inclusion criteria for the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index.  Risks and uncertainties also include the risks set forth in Avanir's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, in the Company's Current Report on Form 8-K filed with the SEC on November 3, 2006, and from time-to-time in other publicly available information regarding the Company.  Copies of this information are available from Avanir upon request.  Avanir disclaims any intent to update these forward-looking statements.

 

Avanir Pharmaceuticals Contacts:

Patrick O'Brien                                                    

949-389-6789                                                   

pobrien@avanir.com                                          

 

 

Nov 16, 2006