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19 February 2002 - Eurogentec signed supply agreement with Epoch Biosciences


Belgium, Liège - 19 February 2002

Eurogentec S.A. and Epoch Biosciences signed a supply agreement for the distribution of DNA probes. Eurogentec S.A. (Liege, Belgium), a leading supplier of innovative products and services to the European Life-Science community, will use Epoch's Yakima Yellow™ dye and Eclipse® Non-Fluorescent Quencher to produce custom oligonucleotides for sale in Europe through both its direct sales force and distributors, and in Japan through its joint venture with Nippon Gene Co. Ltd. This supply agreement allows Eurogentec to sell custom oligonucleotides that include Epoch's proprietary yellow dye or quencher modification.

Yakima Yellow™ is a fluorescent dye tag that can be incorporated into synthetic DNA molecules to allow probe detection on a variety of platforms. The Eclipse® Quencher is a new non-fluorescent quencher that allows DNA detection probes to be used for Real-Time PCR applications such as measuring gene expression or detecting single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs).

"Qualitative and quantitative PCR technology is very important for today molecular biology", stresses Didier Allaer, Business Unit Manager Genomics at Eurogentec." The molecules provided by Epoch will help us to propose even more complete solutions to our customers. Eurogentec is a leader in modified oligonucleotide synthesis and these new dyes complement ideally the molecules developed by our company. This is already the fifth new modification for oligonucleotide synthesis that the company has launched during the first quarter of 2002.

"These agreements are part of a series of steps we intend to take to broaden the distribution of our products through alliances with proven partners. These international relationships are important and logical elements of our strategy to commercialize our proprietary technologies globally", commented William G. Gerber, M.D., chief executive officer of Epoch. "We believe these technologies provide performance advantages to scientists who are engaged in disease research and drug discovery, and that their worldwide availability through these agreements will bring value to academic, biotech, diagnostic, and pharmaceutical researchers."

About Eurogentec

Eurogentec was founded in 1985 as a spin-off of the University of Liège (Belgium). Its mission is to design and deliver reliable and innovative services and products for the Life-Science community. As a leading supplier for genomic and proteomic research, Eurogentec is able to offer its customers integrated solutions, whether they use DNA, antibodies, peptides or proteins as research tools. The company has subsidiaries in France, Germany, the UK, the Netherlands and a branch office in Switzerland. In 1999 Eurogentec acquired Oswel Research Products in Southampton. In August 2001, the company made another strategic step with the incorporation of the joint venture Nippon EGT in Japan. Eurogentec has realized a total turnover of EUR 21 million in 2000. Actually, the company employs 230 persons including 30 PhD's. For more information about Eurogentec please visit www.eurogentec.com

About Epoch Biosciences

Epoch Biosciences develops proprietary products with commercial applications in the genomics and molecular diagnostics fields. Epoch's technology has numerous applications including the detection of inherited diseases and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) to identify individuals at risk for disease or adverse drug reactions. The Company's chemical reagents enhance the performance of genetic analysis procedures, and are compatible with the majority of DNA analysis systems currently employed or under development for research and diagnostic uses. The Company licenses its chemistries to leading genomics companies for incorporation in their systems and distribution to end-users. Epoch also manufactures and sells specialty oligonucleotides and genetic detection systems employing its proprietary chemistry. Information about Epoch is available at www.epochbio.com.


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