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Dec 06, 2004

ZIOPHARM and The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center Present Data on ZIO-102 at American Society of Hematology
Second Organic Arsenic

ZIOPHARM and The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center Present Data on ZIO-102 at American Society of Hematology Second Organic Arsenic

ZIOPHARM and The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center Present Data on ZIO-102 at American Society of Hematology Second Organic Arsenic

SAN DIEGO, DEC. 6 -- ZIOPHARM, Inc. today announced that Dr. Xiaodong Cheng, MD from The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center presented preclinical data on ZIO-102, the second of the Company's organic arsenic products. Data were presented at the 46th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH), December 3-8, in San Diego. In studies that compared ZIO-102, a lipid-soluble organic arsenic, to arsenic trioxide.

ZIO-102 was shown to be significantly more active against several human leukemia cell lines. ZIO-102 was also considerably less toxic than arsenic trioxide in both in vivo and in vitro assays. These findings with ZIO-102 extend preclinical data previously reported with ZIO-101, a water-soluble organic arsenic also being developed by ZIOPHARM.

ZIO-101 is planned for evaluation in two Phase I trials in blood and solid cancers to commence at M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in April 2005. "The emerging activity profile of ZIO-102 coupled with its lipid solubility may extend the applicability of these organic arsenicals into new areas of clinical utility," commented Jonathan J. Lewis, MD, CEO of ZIOPHARM. "As compared to arsenic trioxide, we expect considerable dose increases of these organic arsenics to be well tolerated in persons with diverse cancers. The parallel development of ZIO-101 and ZIO-102 is part of our risk management strategy."

About ZIOPHARM, Inc.

ZIOPHARM, Inc. is a privately held company. It was founded in January 2004 to develop and commercialize a diverse, risk-sensitive portfolio of in- licensed cancer therapies. All products are focused on addressing unmet medical needs, with the potential for expedited approval and broad usage. The Company's first in-licensed product, ZIO-101, is a small molecule, one of a class of novel organic arsenics licensed from The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center; it is planned for Phase I study initiating late in April of 2005. ZIO-102 is the second product under development from this class of organic arsenics from the same program. The Company's third product, ZIO-201, is a small molecule licensed from DEKK-TEC that is currently in Phase I clinical testing in patients with a variety of late-stage cancers.

ZIOPHARM is actively evaluating and negotiating for additional product candidates with the objective of a balanced portfolio of at least three clinical-stage compounds and at least one late preclinical candidate by the end of 2005. Each product candidate undergoes a tightly managed evaluation process leveraging the Company's management team's combined 100+ years of oncology experience in clinical development, regulatory strategy, business development and product commercialization.

Both the Company's structure and mission set it apart from other cancer drug companies. The Company's rigorously disciplined approach to screening product candidates is designed to accelerate clinical programs while reducing the expense and risk typically incurred in researching, developing and launching new cancer products. With an intimate understanding of the regulatory approval process, ZIOPHARM expects to break new ground in that regard as it brings new cancer compounds to market.

For more information, please visit www.ziopharm.com