COLUMBIA, Md. and SAN ANTONIO, Oct 23, 2006 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- DHA omega-3 innovator Martek Biosciences Corporation and Mission Pharmacal Company, the makers of Citracal(R) branded dietary supplements, announced today that they have entered into a five-year license and supply agreement. This new agreement provides for the continued supply of Martek's life'sDHA(TM) to Mission Pharmacal. Under the terms of this agreement, Mission Pharmacal has agreed to purchase all of its DHA omega-3 needs from Martek for prescription pregnancy and nursing products in the United States and other designated territories. There are no minimum purchase requirements or other financial commitments to Martek. Mission Pharmacal will continue to display the life'sDHA(TM) logo on the product packaging, and it will also include the life'sDHA(TM) logo in related marketing, advertising and promotional materials.
"Mission Pharmacal has an excellent track record of successfully delivering innovative and health-enhancing products to consumers," said Steve Dubin, CEO of Martek. "We look forward to a long-term relationship between Martek and Mission that will help to support healthy mothers and infants for many years to come."
In January of 2006, Mission Pharmacal successfully introduced Citracal(R) Prenatal + DHA with life'sDHA(TM) as part of its prescription prenatal vitamin product line. Since its introduction, Citracal(R) Prenatal + DHA has rapidly established itself as one of the leading brands of prescription prenatal products that contain DHA, a key ingredient for infant brain and eye development. The Citracal(R) prenatal pack contains a balanced daily dose of prescription-strength vitamins and minerals in a tablet and a 250 mg capsule of life'sDHA(TM). Citracal(R) Prenatal + DHA is intended to improve the nutritional status of women prior to conception, throughout pregnancy and in the postnatal period for both lactating and non-lactating mothers.
Studies have shown that maternal DHA is beneficial to a baby's health. Increased availability of DHA during pregnancy and lactation nourishes the neurological, visual and nervous system development of babies and may play a role in long-term infant heart heath and maternal well-being. Researchers have found the mental processing scores of children at age four correlated positively with maternal DHA intake during pregnancy. Additionally, early research indicates that maternal DHA supplementation during pregnancy may increase the length of gestation, bringing the pregnancy closer to full term, allowing for increased fetal development. Yet despite its importance, Americans have among the lowest dietary intakes of DHA omega-3 in the world. Additionally, expert bodies such as the FDA have advised pregnant and nursing women to limit their fish consumption due to the potentially high levels of contaminants such as mercury.
Life'sDHA(TM) is unique in the market because it is derived from a sustainable and vegetarian source. Made from microalgae under tightly controlled manufacturing conditions, life'sDHA(TM) is free of oceanic contaminants that may be present in certain fish or fish oils.
"The combination of Martek's patented life'sDHA(TM) with Mission's prenatal vitamin furthers our goal of bringing the best prenatal vitamin products to expecting and nursing mothers," said Robert Ganguzza, vice president of marketing for Mission Pharmacal Company. "The supply agreement with Martek is a logical choice for Mission in its long term development plan for innovative prenatal vitamin products. Our patients deserve the high quality of life'sDHA(TM)."
Mission Pharmacal, the makers of Citracal(R), America's #1 calcium citrate brand to fight osteoporosis, is a privately held pharmaceutical company based in San Antonio, Texas. For more than 60 years, the company has been dedicated to identifying unmet health needs in the marketplace and developing innovative prescription and over-the-counter products to meet them. Currently, Mission Pharmacal provides physicians and consumers with pharmaceutical, nutritional, and diagnostic products. To learn more about the Citracal(R) family of products log onto http://www.citracal.com.
Martek Biosciences Corporation (MATK) is a leader in the innovation and development of DHA omega-3 products that promote health and wellness through every stage of life. The Company produces life'sDHA(TM), a sustainable and vegetarian source of DHA omega-3, for use in foods, beverages, infant formula, and supplements, and ARA (arachidonic acid), an omega-6 fatty acid, for use in infant formula. For more information on Martek Biosciences, visit http://www.martek.com/.
Sections of this release contain forward-looking statements concerning, among other things, expectations regarding Mission Pharmacal Company's product launches and widespread use of Martek's DHA. These statements are based upon numerous assumptions which Martek cannot control and involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ. These statements should be understood in light of the risk factors set forth in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, but not limited to, the Company's Form 10-Q for the fiscal quarter ended July 31, 2006 and other filed reports on Form 10-K, Form 10-K/A, Form 10-Q and Form 8-K.