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Exton, PA - December 16, 2003 - Morphotek Inc. announced today that Abgenix, Inc. of Fremont, CA has confirmed the development of an antibody-producing cell line from the companies' research collaboration. The development resulted in an undisclosed milestone payment to Morphotek. The cell line comes from a research program employing Morphotek's proprietary MORPHODOMA® technology, a process that rapidly evolves lead mammalian cell lines to generate subclones yielding protein products with enhanced therapeutic efficacy and/or genetically enhanced cells exhibiting high titers of protein for scaleable manufacturing.

"The generation of this cell line is another independent validation of the utility of our MORPHODOMA® technology that can rapidly optimize cell lines for product development and/or manufacturing," said Nicholas C. Nicolaides, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer, Morphotek.

Philip M. Sass, Ph.D., Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer added, "Our MORPHODOMA® process offers a robust enabling technology that can further enhance the optimization of lead therapeutic protein products or high-titer cell lines directly within a collaborator's preferred operating system, thereby shortening the timelines for development."

Morphotek ( is a biotechnology company focused on the generation of proprietary organisms for product development using a patented platform technology that can enhance the natural process of genetic evolution within a targeted host. The technology has been successfully applied to microbes, plants, and mammals to yield genetically diverse offspring that are suitable for pharmaceutical and agricultural product development in the areas of antibody therapeutics, protein therapeutics, product manufacturing, drug target discovery, and improved output traits for commercial applications. The company is currently focusing its MORPHODOMA® and DIRECT-LINE® platform technologies on the development and manufacturing of therapeutic proteins and antibodies for the treatment of cancer, inflammation and infectious disease.

Contact: Philip M. Sass, Ph.D./Morphotek, 610-423-6100,