Advanced Research Technologies acquires Alerion Biomedical

16 February 2006

Montreal, Canada. Advanced Research Technologies Inc. (ART) (TSX: ARA), a Canadian medical device company and producer of optical molecular imaging products for the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries, has concluded a definitive agreement to acquire substantially all of the imaging technology and product assets of Alerion Biomedical, Inc. The company is a US-based developer and manufacturer of biomarkers and contrast media for preclinical and clinical imaging devices. This transaction is subject to obtaining all necessary regulatory approvals, including that of the Toronto Stock Exchange.

"We are delighted with this acquisition, which represents a highly strategic, value-added transaction for ART," said Micheline Bouchard, President and CEO. "In addition to producing preclinical and clinical imaging devices, ART will now have the capability to develop and supply biomarker and imaging agents for the preclinical and clinical markets, thus creating a new recurring revenue platform for the Company." "According to recent industry reports, the total biomarker and radiopharmaceutical sector represents a global market in excess of US$5.0 billion", added Ms. Bouchard.

Dr. Blake Ingle, Chairman of Alerion Biomedical, Inc., commented, "We are pleased that our imaging products have found a home within ART whose management is positioned to exploit the true economic potential of these biomarker products in conjunction with ART's imaging devices."

A distinct advantage of the biomarker technology developed by Alerion Biomedical, Inc., in particular the Fenestra product line, is its application or potential application to multiple imaging modalities including CT, Optical and MRI. "The ability of this new biomarker technology to be adapted to multiple modalities will enlarge our customer base and help accelerate market acceptance by researchers and clinicians," said Ms. Bouchard. Initially, ART will offer its biomarker products to the preclinical market, including its installed customer base of the world's leading pharmaceutical companies and research institutions that currently use ART's eXplore Optix preclinical optical imaging system.

An advantage inherent to the Fenestra biomarker technology is that it enhances imaging on a user-friendly and non-radioactive basis, which makes it more cost effective in that it permits multiple scans on the same specimens over long periods of time. The technology was developed following more than five years of research at the University of Michigan and investment of over US$10 million in combined research and development funding. Initial customers have included leading pharmaceutical and biotech companies as well as the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

The Alerion Biomedical biomarker technology acquired by ART has potential applications for both the preclinical and clinical markets. The transaction is expected to close within a few days and is subject to TSX approval. The terms are not disclosed.

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