Nastech Appoints MDRNA, Inc. Directors Strategic Advisory Board

BOTHELL, Wash., Feb. 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Nastech Pharmaceutical Company Inc. ("Nastech") (NASDAQ:NSTK) announced today that it has named members to the MDRNA, Inc. ("MDRNA") Directors Strategic Advisory Board that will provide scientific, financial and corporate governance expertise as Nastech moves to establish MDRNA, currently a wholly-owned subsidiary, as an independent company.

Advisory Board appointees include:

Susan B. Bayh, J.D. has been a director of Nastech since July 2005 as a member of the Compensation and chairman of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committees of the Board of Directors. Mrs. Bayh currently serves on the boards of directors of Curis, Inc., a therapeutic drug development company, Dendreon Corporation, a therapeutic drug development company, Dyax Corp., a biopharmaceutical company, Emmis Communications, a diversified media company, and Wellpoint, Inc., a Blue Cross / Blue Shield company. In addition, Mrs. Bayh is a member of the Audit and Compensation Committees of the board of directors of Curis, Inc., and a member of the Compensation Committee of the board of directors of Emmis Communications. Previously, Mrs. Bayh also served on the boards of directors of Cubist Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a pharmaceutical company, from 2000 to 2004, and Esperion Therapeutics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, from 2000 to 2003. From 1994 to 2004, she was a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the College of Business Administration at Butler University in Indianapolis, Indiana. From 1994 to 2000, she was a Commissioner for the International Joint Commission of the Water Treaty Act between the United States and Canada. From 1989 to 1994, Mrs. Bayh served as an attorney in the Pharmaceutical Division of Eli Lilly and Company. Mrs. Bayh earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California at Berkeley and received her J.D. degree from the University of Southern California Law Center.

Alexander D. Cross, Ph.D. has been a director of Nastech since July 2005 and is currently chairman of the Audit and a member of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committees of the Board of Directors. Dr. Cross served on the board of directors of Ligand Pharmaceuticals Inc. and was a member of its Audit and Compensation Committees until March 2007. Dr. Cross also served as Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Cytopharm, Inc. until August 2006. Dr. Cross has been a consultant in the fields of pharmaceuticals and biotechnology since January 1986 and is presently a principal of NDA Partners. Previously, Dr. Cross served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Zoecon Corporation, a biotechnology company, from April 1983 to December 1985, and Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer from 1979 to 1983. Dr. Cross also previously held several corporate management positions at Syntex Corporation from 1961 through 1979. Dr. Cross holds 109 issued United States patents and is the author of 90 peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Cross received his B.Sc., Ph.D. and D.Sc. degrees from the University of Nottingham, England, and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Daniel L. Peters was most recently President and CEO of global Medical Diagnostics at GE Healthcare. Prior to his role at GE Healthcare, Mr. Peters was Chief Operating Officer at Amersham Health. Previously, he served as the President of Nycomed Amersham Imaging, where he was responsible for managing the company's diagnostic pharmaceutical operations in North, South, and Central America. Mr. Peters had been President of Nycomed Imaging Inc. in the Americas from 1994 to 1997. Prior to that, he held roles of increasing responsibility within the U.S. pharmaceuticals business of Sterling Winthrop including marketing, strategic planning and general management, being appointed President of the U.S. Pharmaceutical business in 1993. Mr. Peters is a former Trustee and founding member of the Health Care Institute of New Jersey from 1996 to 2006; a former board member of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America from 1995 to 2005 and a former board member of the National Pharmaceutical Council from 1990 to 1993. Mr. Peters also served on the board of Diatide Inc. from 1994 to 1997. Mr. Peters holds a bachelors degree from Western Illinois University.

Steven C. Quay, M.D., Ph.D., has been employed by Nastech since August 2000 and currently serves as the Chairman of the Board and CEO. In 1999, Dr. Quay founded and was Chairman, President and CEO of Atossa Healthcare, Inc., which focused on the development of a proprietary platform of diagnostics and treatments related to breast cancer risk assessment and therapeutics and other healthcare products for women. Nastech acquired Atossa in August 2000. In 1991, Dr. Quay founded Sonus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a company engaged in the research and development of drug delivery systems and oxygen delivery products based on emulsion and surfactant technology, where he served as CEO, President and a director until June 1999. In 1984, Dr. Quay founded Salutar, Inc. to develop contrast agents for magnetic resonance imaging. Two pharmaceuticals, OmniScan(R) and TeslaScan(R), were invented by Dr. Quay at Salutar and have been used in over 35 million patients since the drugs received regulatory approval. Dr. Quay has authored more than 100 papers in diagnostic imaging, oncology, RNA interference and biochemistry and holds 65 U.S. patents. Dr. Quay graduated from the University of Michigan Medical School, where he received an M.A. and a Ph.D. in biological chemistry in 1974 and 1975, respectively, and an M.D. in 1977. Dr. Quay completed his post-graduate work in the chemistry department of Massachusetts Institute of Technology and received his residency training at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School in Boston. From 1980 to 1986, he was a faculty member of Stanford University School of Medicine.

James E. Rothman, Ph.D., is currently the Clyde and Helen Wu Professor of Chemical Biology and Director of Columbia University's Judith P. Sulzberger, M.D. Genome Center. Until December 2007, Rothman served as the Chief Science Advisor of GE Healthcare. He elucidated the molecular machinery responsible for the transfer of materials among compartments within cells. Prior to joining Columbia University in 2004, Professor Rothman held Professorships at Stanford (1978-1988) and Princeton (1988-1991) universities. In 1991, he founded the Cellular Biochemistry and Biophysics Department at Memorial Sloan- Kettering Cancer Center and was Vice-Chairman of Sloan-Kettering in New York City (1991-2004). Professor Rothman's pioneering research in cell biology has been recognized by the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (1993). He has also received numerous international awards, including the Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research in 2002.

Gregory Sessler currently serves as the Chief Financial Officer of Spiration, Inc. and is a director of VLST, Corp. Prior to joining Spiration, Mr. Sessler served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Rosetta Inpharmatics, a leader in informational genomics, from March 2000 until its acquisition by Merck & Co. in July 2001 for $540 million. In addition to playing an instrumental role in the acquisition by Merck, Mr. Sessler led Rosetta's efforts to a successful initial public offering in August 2000 as well as previous initial public offerings for three other biomedical companies. Mr. Sessler is a member of the AICPA and the Financial Executives International and previously served on the board of directors of Corixa Corporation. He is also on the Executive Committee and past chairman of the Board of Directors of the Washington Biotechnology and Biomedical Association. Mr. Sessler holds a bachelor's degree, magna cum laude, from Syracuse University and a M.B.A. from Stanford.

Bruce R. Thaw, J.D., has been a director of Nastech since June 1991 and currently serves as member of the Audit and Compensation Committees of the Board of Directors. Since January 2000, Mr. Thaw has served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Bulbtronics, Inc., a national distributor of technical and specialty light sources and related products to the medical, scientific, entertainment and industrial markets. Mr. Thaw is a practicing attorney and was admitted to the bar of the State of New York in 1978 and the California State Bar in 1983. From 1984 to 2001, Mr. Thaw served as Nastech's general counsel. From 1990 until April 2007, Mr. Thaw served as a member of the board of directors of SafeNet, Inc., a company that designs, manufactures and markets information security systems, products and services that protect and secure digital identities, communications, intellectual property and applications over wide area networks and virtual private networks. Mr. Thaw holds a B.B.A. degree in Banking and Finance from Hofstra University and a J.D. degree from the Hofstra University School of Law.

About Nastech

Nastech is a biopharmaceutical company developing innovative products based on proprietary molecular biology-based drug delivery technologies. Nastech is creating technologies that enable the delivery of peptide and protein therapeutics without the requirement of an injection, which is currently the most common form of administration for this class of drugs. Nastech has also established a wholly-owned subsidiary, MDRNA, Inc., to focus on developing RNA-based technologies and therapeutics. MDRNA is harnessing the power of RNA interference, a cellular mechanism that can turn off the production of a specific protein through use of small interfering RNAs (siRNAs), to develop a new class of therapeutics by identifying key protein targets, designing the siRNAs that will turn off the production of the targeted proteins, and creating a formulation for the delivery of the therapeutics. Nastech and its collaboration partners are developing products for multiple therapeutic areas including osteoporosis, obesity, diabetes, autism, respiratory diseases and inflammatory conditions. For additional information about Nastech please visit http://www.nastech.com.

Nastech Forward Looking Statements

Statements made in this press release may be forward-looking statements within the meaning of Federal Securities laws that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties and involve factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected or suggested. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to: (i) the ability of Nastech or a subsidiary to obtain additional funding; (ii) the ability of Nastech or a subsidiary to attract and/or maintain manufacturing, research, development and commercialization partners; (iii) the ability of Nastech, a subsidiary and/or a partner to successfully complete product research and development, including preclinical and clinical studies and commercialization; (iv) the ability of Nastech, a subsidiary and/or a partner to obtain required governmental approvals; and (v) the ability of Nastech, a subsidiary and/or a partner to develop and commercialize products that can compete favorably with those of competitors. Additional factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected or suggested in any forward-looking statements are contained in Nastech's most recent periodic reports on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q that are filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Nastech assumes no obligation to update and supplement forward-looking statements because of subsequent events.

    Contacts:

    Nastech
    Bruce York
    Secretary and Interim Chief Financial Officer
    (425) 908-3698
    ir@nastech.com

    Russo Partners, LLC
    David Schull (Media)
    (212) 845-4271

Source: Nastech Pharmaceutical Company Inc.

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