Elite Pharmaceuticals Initiates Pilot Bioequivalence Study for ELI-201

NORTHVALE, N.J., Dec. 5, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Elite Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ("Elite" or the "Company") ("Elite") (OTCBB:ELTP) announced today the first dosing of a pilot bioequivalence study in healthy volunteers for ELI-201, the Company's twice daily abuse deterrent oxycodone/naltrexone product.

Elite has met the goal of starting the bio study for ELI-201 in December. A pivotal bioequivalence study for a second abuse deterrent product is scheduled to begin dosing in January 2014, and the pivotal bioequivalence study for ELI-201 is scheduled to begin dosing in March 2014. The bioequivalence studies for these opioid abuse deterrent products are being conducted under the direction of Camargo Pharmaceutical Services.

"The start of the ELI-201 pilot study marks a major milestone for the development of products utilizing our proprietary abuse deterrent technology," said Nasrat Hakim, Elite's President and CEO. "I am extremely pleased with the progress Elite has made with the development of this technology. We have set several initiatives in motion and all of our research and development projects are on or ahead of schedule.
We appreciate the guidance and expertise that has been provided by Camargo and look forward to this next phase for the Company."

About Elite's Abuse Deterrent Technology

Elite's abuse deterrent products utilize the Company's proprietary pharmacological abuse deterrent technology. Elite's abuse deterrent technology is a multi-particulate capsule which contains an opioid agonist in addition to naltrexone, an opioid antagonist. Naltrexone is an opioid receptor antagonist used primarily in the management of alcohol dependence and opioid dependence. When this product is taken as intended, the naltrexone is designed to pass through the body unreleased while the opioid agonist releases over time providing therapeutic pain relief for which it is prescribed. If the multi-particulate beads are crushed or dissolved, the opioid antagonist, naltrexone, is designed to release. The absorption of the naltrexone is intended to block the euphoria by preferentially binding to same receptors in the brain as the opioid agonist and thereby reducing the incentive for abuse or misuse by recreational drug abusers.

About Camargo Pharmaceutical Services

Camargo is a full-service drug development partner specializing in the
505(b)(2) process -- an approach for developing products that offer differentiated benefits. Camargo is capable of managing every facet of the plan throughout the development continuum, from feasibility assessments, formulation and testing the drug product, to conducting preclinical and clinical studies, to final submission.

About Elite Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Elite Pharmaceuticals, Inc. develops oral sustained and controlled release products. Elite's strategy includes assisting partner companies in the life cycle management of products to improve off-patent drug products and developing generic versions of controlled release drug products with high barriers to entry. Elite has six commercial products currently being sold, an additional product approved and soon to be launched, eleven approved products pending manufacturing site transfer and two additional products under review pending approval by the FDA.
Elite's lead pipeline products include abuse resistant opioids utilizing the Company's patented proprietary technology, and a once-daily opioid. They are sustained release oral formulations of opioids for the treatment of chronic pain, which address two of the limitations of existing oral opioids: the provision of consistent relief of baseline pain levels and deterrence of potential abuse. Elite also provides contract manufacturing for Ascend Laboratories (a subsidiary of Alkem Laboratories Ltd.) and has partnered with Epic Pharma for the manufacturing and distribution of eleven approved products pending manufacturing site, with Hi-Tech Pharmacal to develop an intermediate for a generic product, and a Hong Kong based company to develop a branded product for the United States market and its territories. Elite operates a GMP and DEA registered facility for research, development, and manufacturing located in Northvale, NJ.

This news release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.
Including those related to the effects, if any, on future results, performance or other expectations that may have some correlation to the subject matter of this press release, readers are cautioned that such forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties including, without limitation, its ability to obtain FDA approval of the transfers of the ANDAs or the timing of such approval process, delays, uncertainties, inability to obtain necessary ingredients and other factors not under the control of Elite, which may cause actual results, performance or achievements of Elite to be materially different from the results, performance or other expectations that may be implied by these forward-looking statements. These risks and other factors, including, without limitation, the Company's ability to obtain sufficient funding under the LPC Agreement or from other sources, the timing or results of pending and future clinical trials, regulatory reviews and approvals by the Food and Drug Administration and other regulatory authorities, intellectual property protections and defenses, and the Company's ability to operate as a going concern, are discussed in Elite's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its reports on forms 10-K, 10-Q and 8-K. Elite undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements.

CONTACT: Elite Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
         Dianne Will, Investor Relations, 518-398-6222
         Dianne@elitepharma.com
 

Posted: December 2013

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