Vertex Pharmaceuticals Announces Acceptance of Late-Breaker Abstract on Telaprevir

Vertex Pharmaceuticals Announces Acceptance of Late-Breaker Abstract on Telaprevir, Investigational HCV Protease Inhibitor, for Presentation at EASL Annual Meeting

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Mar 31, 2008 -- Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (Nasdaq: VRTX) today announced that data related to its investigational hepatitis C protease inhibitor telaprevir will be featured in a late-breaker poster presentation during the 43rd Annual Meeting of the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL) in Milan, April 23-27, 2008.

The title of the abstract is "A Study of Telaprevir (TVR) with Peginterferon alfa-2A (P) and Ribavirin (R) in Subjects with Well-documented Prior P/R Null Response, Non-Response or Relapse: Preliminary Results" and will be presented at EASL starting on Thursday, April 24. Accepted late-breaker abstracts for the EASL meeting are now available on the EASL website. Information contained in the late-breaker poster abstract has also been filed by Vertex with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on a Form 8-K.

In addition to the late-breaker abstract, three additional abstracts on telaprevir have been accepted for presentation during EASL:

Oral Presentations:

PROVE 1: Results From a Phase 2 Study of Telaprevir with Peginterferon alfa-2a and Ribavirin in Treatment-Naive Subjects with Hepatitis C; Thursday; April 24 at 3:45 p.m. CET (9:45 a.m EDT).

Treatment of Chronic Hepatitis C with Telaprevir (TVR) in Combination with Peginterferon-alfa-2a with or without Ribavirin: Further Interim Analysis Results of the PROVE2 Study; Friday, April 25 at 11:45 a.m. CET (6:45 a.m EDT).

Poster Presentation:

Natural Prevalence Of HCV Variants with Decreased Susceptibility to NS3--4a Protease Inhibitors in Treatment-Naive Subjects; starting Thursday, April 24 at 7:00 p.m. CET (1:00 p.m EDT).

About Telaprevir

Telaprevir (VX-950) is an investigational oral inhibitor of HCV protease, an enzyme essential for viral replication, and is one of the most advanced investigational antiviral agents in development that specifically targets HCV.

About Hepatitis C

Hepatitis C is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis C virus, which is found in the blood of people with the disease. HCV, a serious public health concern affecting 3.4 million individuals in the United States, is spread through direct contact with the blood of infected people. Though many people with hepatitis C may not experience symptoms, others may have symptoms such as jaundice, abdominal pain, fatigue and fever. Chronic hepatitis C significantly increases a person's risk for developing long-term infection, chronic liver disease, cirrhosis or death. The burden of liver disease associated with HCV infection is increasing, and current therapies typically provide sustained benefit in less than half of patients with genotype 1 HCV, the most common strain of the virus.

About Vertex

Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated is a global biotechnology company committed to the discovery and development of breakthrough small molecule drugs for serious diseases. The Company's strategy is to commercialize its products both independently and in collaboration with major pharmaceutical companies. Vertex's product pipeline is focused on viral diseases, inflammation, autoimmune diseases, cancer, pain and bacterial infection. Vertex co-discovered the HIV protease inhibitor, Lexiva, with GlaxoSmithKline.

Safe Harbor Statement

This press release contains a forward-looking statement that telaprevir data will be featured in a late-breaker poster presentation at EASL starting on April 24. While we believe this statement to be correct, it is based on information we have received from EASL and that information is subject to future developments that could adversely affect the content, timing or form of that presentation.