Chronic Wounds Cost The Nation More Than $25 Billion Per Year, Reports Ron Najafi, CEO of NovaBay Pharmaceuticals

By April 29, 2014

Dr. Ron Najafi, CEO of NovaBay® Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NYSE MKT: NBY), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, today reported on the tremendous medical toll from chronic wounds—and how the nation can reduce that toll. “Chronic wounds represent a major healthcare challenge,” he wrote in a new blog post.“ According to a 2009 National Institutes of Health study, in the U.S. alone, 6.5 million patients suffered from chronic wounds with treatment costing in excess of$25 billion annually.”

In his post, Dr. Najafi described the types and causes of chronic wounds—those wounds that “fail to heal within eight weeks after the original break in the skin occurs,” he wrote.

One of the most common chronic wounds, for instance, “is the diabetic foot ulcer, a major contributor to leg amputations in the U.S.,” Dr. Najafi wrote. The cause: In diabetes, the body loses the ability to deliver sufficient oxygen to the wound, which is necessary for healing.

Another common set of chronic wounds are ulcers in the legs of people with a condition called venous insufficiency, in which blood (and thus adequate oxygen for healing) can’t easily travel through the body.

The key to reducing the problem of chronic wounds over the long term is prevention, Dr. Najafi wrote. Exercise, healthy diets and not smoking can help prevent both diabetes and venous insufficiency, thus removing the underlying conditions that contribute to chronic wounds.

But there are also important steps that we can take in the short term, Najafi explained. Venous insufficiency can be treated surgically or by wearing compression socks to improve blood flow, for example.

More important, he described, many chronic wounds are hard to treat because of the presence of biofilms, communities of bacteria that accumulate in the wound. Those biofilms protect the bacteria from the immune system and from many antibiotics, slowing or even stopping the healing process and helping spur the bacteria to develop resistance to antibiotics.

As Dr. Najafi described, NovaBay has developed a solution to this problem—an advanced wound cleanser called NeutroPhase. “NeutroPhase has been shown in the laboratory to have the ability to not only eradicate biofilms, but also to inactivate the toxins generated by the bacteria without exhibiting toxicity to the cells responsible for healing,” Dr. Najafi wrote.

The use of NeutroPhase could be part of the answer to this growing healthcare challenge of chronic wounds.

About NovaBay Pharmaceuticals, Inc.: Going Beyond Antibiotics®
NovaBay Pharmaceuticals is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on addressing the unmet therapeutic needs of the global, topical anti-infective market.

About NeutroPhase®
NeutroPhase® is a 510(k)-cleared wound cleanser and is intended for use under the supervision of healthcare professionals for cleansing and removal of foreign material, including: microorganisms and debris from wounds; cleaning minor cuts, minor burns, superficial abrasions, and minor irritations of the skin; as well as moistening absorbent wound dressings. It is also intended for moistening and debriding acute and chronic dermal lesions, such as: Stage I-IV pressure ulcers, stasis ulcers, leg ulcers, diabetic foot ulcers, post surgical wounds, first and second degree burns, as well as grafted and donor sites.

Forward-looking Statements
This release contains forward-looking statements and opinions, which are based upon management’s current expectations, assumptions, estimates, projections and beliefs. These statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the general use of antibiotics in the United States and NovaBay’s possible effect on that use. The words “expect,” “potential,” “believe” and “will” are intended to identify these forward-looking statements.  Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results or achievements to be materially different and adverse from those expressed in or implied by the forward-looking statements. Factors that might cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, risks and uncertainties relating to difficulties or delays in development, clinical trial, regulatory approval, production and marketing of the company’s product candidates, unexpected adverse side effects or inadequate therapeutic efficacy of the product candidates, the uncertainty of patent protection for the company’s intellectual property or trade secrets, the company’s ability to obtain additional financing as necessary and unanticipated research and development and other costs. Other risks relating to NovaBay and Aganocide compounds, including risks that could cause results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements in this press release, are detailed in NovaBay’s latest Form 10-K and Form 10-Q filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, especially under the heading “Risk Factors.” The forward-looking statements in this release speak only as of this date, and NovaBay disclaims any intent or obligation to revise or update publicly any forward-looking statement except as required by law.

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NovaBay Pharmaceuticals Contacts
Thomas J. Paulson  
Chief Financial Officer
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Ana Kapor
Director, Investor Relations and Corporate Communications
NovaBay Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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