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DiaMedica Announces Positive Results from a Hypertension Study with its GSK3B-Blocking Antibody

March 9, 2011

DiaMedica (TSX-V:DMA) announced antihypertensive results with its lead monoclonal antibody DM-204. Consistent and significant blood pressure lowering results are observed with DM-204 in all animals and the lower blood pressure occurred for the duration of the study performed.

In a preclinical study conducted by Physiogenix Inc. (Madison, WI), DiaMedica’s DM-204 has been shown to significantly and durably lower systolic blood pressure in all animals by an average of 15 mm Hg (p<0.05) over the duration of the study. These findings have important implications for commercial prospects of DM-204 for treating hypertension (high blood pressure). DM-204 blocks the activity of glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta (GSK3B), a key cell signaling enzyme linked to several diseases including diabetes and certain cancers.

Hypertension affects nearly one third of adult Americans and is a leading risk factor for early cardiovascular disease and stroke. Hypertensive patients are adequately controlling their blood pressure in only 20% of cases with currently available medicines. Multiple antihypertensive medications are often required to treat patients with high blood pressure. Moreover, approximately 70% of Type 2 diabetes patients suffer from high blood pressure. As a result, an anti-hypertensive therapy that simultaneously improves the diabetic condition is expected to have greatly enhanced commercial prospects.

“If the significant lowering of systolic blood pressure observed in the pre-clinical study is emulated clinically, then DM-204 has the potential to replace the current standard of care for treating hypertension patients. The current standard of care typically consists of a daily administration of two or more drugs compared with our single compound, which could potentially be administered as infrequently as once a month,” stated Rick Pauls, President and CEO of DiaMedica. “Results of the present study further demonstrate the exceptional potential of DM-204 that is also being tested for diabetes and other indications”.

About Hypertension
Hypertension (high blood pressure) is a chronic medical condition in which blood pressure is elevated to 140 mm Hg or greater systolic or 90 mm Hg or greater diastolic blood pressure. Approximately 75 million Americans and close to one billion people worldwide are affected by hypertension. Adults of all ages and backgrounds can develop hypertension including 70% of patients with Type 2 diabetes. According to The American Heart Association estimates, the direct and indirect expenses associated with hypertension cost the health care system more than $73 billion in 2009.

About DiaMedica Inc.
DiaMedica is a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing novel therapeutic products that could dramatically improve the lives of people with Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes and other large unmet diseases. DiaMedica’s lead drug DM-199 has been shown to significantly improve glucose metabolism and protect and proliferate beta cells.

The Company is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange Venture under the trading symbol “DMA”.

For more information, please contact:

Rick Pauls
President & CEO
DiaMedica Inc.
Phone: 204.477.7590
Fax: 204.453.3745
rpauls@diamedica.com

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“If the significant lowering of systolic blood pressure observed in the pre-clinical study is emulated clinically, then DM-204 has the potential to replace the current standard of care for treating hypertension patients. The current standard of care typically consists of a daily administration of two or more drugs compared with our single compound, which could potentially be administered as infrequently as once a month,” stated Rick Pauls, President and CEO of DiaMedica. “Results of the present study further demonstrate the exceptional potential of DM-204 that is also being tested for diabetes and other indications”.