Bayer Healthcare and Galapagos in Target Discovery Collaboration

Mechelen, Belgium, December 16, 2003 – Galapagos Genomics today announced a target discovery collaboration with Bayer HealthCare AG.  Within the partnership, the Companies will collaborate to discover and validate novel drug targets for Bayer’s disease areas.  Galapagos will use its disease biology expertise in combination with its SilenceSelectTM and FLeXSelectTM target discovery collections to identify and validate drugable targets.  Under the terms of the agreement, Bayer HealthCare has the exclusive right to select validated targets for drug development in return for upfront payments, research funding and milestones.  Further financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are very pleased to be selected by Bayer HealthCare,” said Onno van de Stolpe, CEO of Galapagos.  “This partnership again underlines the competitive edge of our Company in combining our SilenceSelect and FLeXSelect libraries with high throughput disease biology”.
SilenceSelect is a collection of adenoviruses with siRNA based knock-down sequences targeting over 4,000 human drugable genes, where drugable represents those gene classes of most value for pharmaceutical development.  FLeXSelect is the mirror collection of adenoviruses with full length genes from the drugable gene classes.  These two collections in combination with cellular assays enable the rapid functional discovery of proteins that are directly involved in a specific disease process.  In this partnership, Galapagos will design cellular assays in disease areas of interest to Bayer, and subsequently screen the SilenceSelect and FLeXSelect gene collections to identify and validate targets that will proceed into drug discovery by Bayer.
About Bayer HealthCare AG
Bayer HealthCare AG, a subgroup of Bayer AG, with sales of approximately 9,4 billion Euro in 2002, is one of the world’s leading, innovative companies in the health care and medical products industry.  The company combines the global activities of the divisions Animal Health, Biological Products, Consumer Care, Diagnostics and Pharmaceuticals.  More than 34,000 people are employed by Bayer HealthCare worldwide. Its aim is to discover and manufacture innovative products that will improve human and animal health worldwide.  Its products enhance well-being and quality of life by diagnosing, preventing and treating disease.
About Galapagos Genomics NV
Galapagos Genomics is a discovery company focused on the rapid identification and validation of disease modifying drug targets by functional screening in human disease models.  The research activities encompass the internal programs in osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and Alzheimer’s disease, as well as numerous partnerships with leading pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and biotech companies.  Proprietary targets resulting from our internal programs are used for the development of drugs in our core disease areas, combined with selected out-licensing and partnering of projects during development.  The Company currently employs 90 people, including 22 PhD’s, and occupies a 2000 sq.m. research and production facility in Mechelen, with additional research laboratories in Leiden, The Netherlands.  Galapagos’ other partners include Boehringer Ingelheim, Euroscreen, Exelixis, Incyte, Johnson&Johnson, Organon, Pfizer, Procter&Gamble, UCB Pharma, Vertex and Wyeth.  Galapagos was founded in 1999 by Crucell (Nasdaq, Euronext: CRXL) and Tibotec to exploit Crucell’s unique PER.C6TM technology for target discovery. The shareholders are Abingworth Management, Apax Partners, Burrill&Company, NIB Capital Private Equity, Crucell Holland BV and Tibotec-Virco NV. 
More information on Galapagos can be found at the website  SilenceSelect and FLeXSelect are pending trademarks owned by Galapagos Genomics NV.
Galapagos Genomics                
Onno van de Stolpe, CEO
+31 6290 980 28