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Avicena Signs Worldwide Exclusive Distribution Agreement with RITA Corporation for its Proprietary Dermaceutical Compounds

PALO ALTO, Calif., Aug. 28 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Avicena Group, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: AVGO), a late-stage biotechnology company that develops central nervous system therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases as well as dermaceutical products announced today that it has signed an exclusive worldwide distribution agreement with RITA Corporation, a leading supplier of specialty chemicals to the personal care industry. The agreement covers global rights to certain Avicena compounds for use in the personal care industry. Avicena's proprietary dermaceutical compounds incorporate the company's patented cell-nourishing technology which promotes optimal cellular regeneration and cellular protection, as well as anti-aging skin benefits.

"RITA is highly regarded as a leading, global supplier of specialty chemicals to the cosmetic and personal care industries", said Belinda Tsao-Nivaggioli, Ph.D., CEO of Avicena. "This makes RITA an ideal partner to distribute our proprietary dermaceutical ingredients and to significantly expand our existing dermaceutical business."

"We are excited to have the opportunity to distribute Avicena's scientifically based skin care ingredients", said Brian Goode, President of RITA. "The industry continues to shift toward ingredients that are backed by proven science and achieve measurable skin benefits. Avicena's products fit well into this growing trend."


Avicena is leveraging its proprietary cellular energy technology to commercialize therapeutic dermaceutical products, as well as proprietary ingredients and formulations. Avicena's scientifically based skin care ingredients and formulations are designed to enhance the regeneration of healthier skin and to protect against the effects of aging, as well as oxidative and photo damage.

Avicena has developed Nurigene(TM), an advanced skin care regimen based on the company's patented cell-nourishing technology which enhances optimal cellular regeneration and protection by providing critical nourishment to skin cells. Clinical studies have demonstrated that Nurigene has significant anti-aging benefits, including improvements in skin cell turnover, skin firmness, skin elasticity and the skin's ability to retain moisture.

Avicena currently supplies its patent-protected ingredients to leading manufacturers of dermaceutical and cosmeceutical products. Avicena is also actively researching and developing additional proprietary formulations to complement its current dermaceutical product portfolio.


Avicena Group, Inc. is a Palo Alto, California-based late-stage biotechnology company that develops central nervous system therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases. The company's core technologies, supported by a robust intellectual property portfolio, have broad applications in both pharmaceuticals and dermaceuticals. Avicena's pharmaceutical program centers on rare neurological disorders (orphan diseases). The company is currently analyzing data from its Phase IIb/III trial in ALS. In the near term, Avicena intends to initiate a Phase III trial in Huntington's disease to accompany the ongoing NIH Phase III trial in Parkinson's disease. Avicena's science is well established and its products are safe and well tolerated. Unlike traditional biotechnology companies, Avicena's clinical programs are largely funded by government and non-profit organizations. Avicena presently derives revenue from the sale of proprietary dermaceutical ingredients to skin care manufacturers.

ABOUT RITA Corporation

Over the past 54 years, RITA Corporation has positioned itself as a leading supplier of specialty chemicals to the personal care industry. Headquartered in Crystal Lake, Illinois, RITA operates five wholly-owned distribution centers across the United States and is represented by international agents on six continents. In addition to exclusive distributorships with premier agents, RITA maintains state-of-the-art production, formulation and quality control laboratories to deliver unique solutions personalized to the needs of each customer.


This release contains forward-looking statements that reflect, among other things, management's current expectations, plans and strategies, all of which are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and factors that may cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Many of these risks are beyond our ability to control or predict. See "Risk Factors" under "Item 6. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operation" from our Annual Report on Form 10-KSB for the year ended December 31, 2006, and other descriptions in the company's public filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a discussion of such risks, including the company's need for additional funds, the company's dependence on a limited number of therapeutic compounds, the stage of the products the company is developing, uncertainties relating to clinical trials and regulatory reviews, competition and dependence on collaborative partners, the company's ability to avoid infringement of the patent rights of others, and the company's ability to obtain adequate patent protection and to enforce these rights. Because of these risks, uncertainties and assumptions, you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Furthermore, forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Avicena does not undertake any obligation to update or review any such forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.


The Ruth Group (on behalf of Avicena Group)

Sara Ephraim / (investors)

(646) 536-7002

Janine McCargo / Jason Rando (media)

(646) 536-7033 / 7025 /

SOURCE Avicena Group, Inc.
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