BEAVERTON, Ore., August 26, 1997 -- Epitope, Inc. (Nasdaq: EPTO) today announced that plaintiffs are dismissing the company from all lawsuits, including all class actions, relating to strawberries sold to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) by its former subsidiary, Andrew & Williamson Sales Co. (A&W).

The lawsuits named Epitope and A&W as defendants and alleged injuries resulting from consumption of or other exposure to A&W strawberries. The strawberries, which were sold to the USDA prior to Epitope's acquisition of A&W, have been associated with a March 1997 outbreak of Hepatitis A in Michigan. All plaintiffs have agreed to voluntarily dismiss Epitope from the lawsuits, without prejudice.

"We are delighted that Epitope will no longer need to devote valuable resources to the defense of this litigation," said W. Charles Armstrong, president and chief executive officer. "Epitope had no involvement with the strawberries sold by A&W prior to Epitope's acquisition and we have always believed that Epitope should incur no liability from any related litigation.  We are now free to devote full time to doing what we do best: running Epitope's businesses."

Epitope, Inc. is a biotechnology company that develops and markets medical diagnostic products through its Medical Products group. Its Agritope group is focused on the development and commercialization of novel agricultural products using plant genetic engineering and other modern methods.  SOURCE Epitope, Inc.

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