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Guidant Acquires Majority Stake in Bioabsorbable Stent Company

Guidant is enthusiastic about the potential of bioabsorbable stents, which represent a new frontier in the treatment of coronary artery disease.

Dana G. Mead, Jr., President, Vascular Intervention, Guidant Corporation
INDIANAPOLIS, Apr 1, 2003 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Guidant Corporation (NYSE:GDT), a world leader in the treatment of cardiac and vascular disease, today announced that Guidant will acquire an early-stage company founded by SyneCor, LLC, a medical technology generator of new life sciences companies based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, and Menlo Park and Santa Rosa, Calif. The venture is working to develop new, fully bioabsorbable vascular stent platforms that will be safely absorbed by tissue following the restoration of blood flow in patients with coronary artery disease.

“Guidant is enthusiastic about the potential of bioabsorbable stents, which represent a new frontier in the treatment of coronary artery disease,” said Dana G. Mead, Jr., president, Vascular Intervention, Guidant Corporation. “Based on the work we have seen to date, we believe that drug eluting bioabsorbable stents may have the potential to complement or replace metallic drug eluting stents. This research is aligned with Guidant’s strategy to leverage new medical technologies to provide innovative site-specific therapy. We are extremely excited to be working with this world-class technical team in this new field.”

The new Guidant subsidiary will be established as an entrepreneurial venture in the Silicon Valley, remaining physically separate from Guidant’s Santa Clara and Menlo Park locations. John M. Capek, Ph.D., formerly president, Vascular Intervention, Guidant Corporation, will lead the new initiative.

The new company’s leadership and technical team will also include Richard S. Stack, M.D., F.A.C.C., managing director of SyneCor and Professor Emeritus of Medicine in Cardiology at Duke University Medical Center; William Starling, managing director of SyneCor and co-founder of Cardiac Pathways Corporation (acquired by Boston Scientific Corporation); and Michael Williams, SyneCor LLC member and chief technology officer, formerly vice president of Science and Technology at Medtronic AVE. Scientific technology advisors include Robert S. Langer, Ph.D., Kenneth J. Germeshausen, Professor of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Joseph M. DeSimone, Ph.D., William R. Kenan Jr., Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University. Further details on company management, scientific advisors, location and name will be announced at a later time.

“We are highly encouraged by our progress thus far with bioabsorbable technology, and look forward to working with Guidant to further explore its potential,” said Dr. Stack. “Guidant’s experienced management team, advanced stent technology and exclusive license to everolimus will complement our work with bioabsorbable stents and provide new pathways for creating the stent platform of the future.”

Guidant Corporation pioneers lifesaving technology, giving an opportunity for better life today to millions of cardiac and vascular patients worldwide. The company, driven by a strong entrepreneurial culture of 11,000 employees, develops, manufactures and markets a broad array of products and services that enable less invasive care for some of life’s most threatening medical conditions. For more information visit www.guidant.com.

NOTE TO MEDIA: For more information about Guidant, including its products and services, please visit the company’s newsroom at www.guidant.com/newsroom.

This release includes forward-looking statements concerning the venture, related milestones and payments, and development of the therapy. The statements are based on assumptions about many important factors, including continuing clinical and regulatory developments, product development timelines and other factors identified on Exhibit 99.1 to the company’s most recent 10-K. Actual results may differ materially. The company does not undertake to update its forward-looking statements.

Guidant Corporation Steven Tragash, Corporate Communications, 317/971-2031 Andy Rieth, Investor Relations, 317/971-2061 www.guidant.com

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