Market Overview

Merck Announces Discontinuation of APECS Study Evaluating Verubecestat (MK-8931) for the Treatment of People with Prodromal Alzheimer's Disease

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Merck (NYSE:MRK), known as MSD outside the United States and Canada,
today announced that it will be stopping protocol 019, also known as the
APECS study, a Phase 3 study evaluating verubecestat (MK-8931), an
investigational small molecule inhibitor of the beta-site amyloid
precursor protein cleaving enzyme 1 (BACE1), in people with prodromal
Alzheimer's disease (AD). The decision to stop the study follows a
recommendation by the external Data Monitoring Committee (eDMC), which
assessed overall benefit/risk during a recent interim safety analysis.
The eDMC concluded that it was unlikely that positive benefit/risk could
be established if the trial continued. Data from the APECS study
will be presented at an upcoming medical meeting.

"We are disappointed with this outcome, especially given the lack of
treatment options for patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease," said
Dr. Roger M. Perlmutter, president, Merck Research Laboratories. "We are
grateful to the patients and caregivers who participated in this study,
and despite this outcome, Merck remains committed to developing novel
therapies for the treatment of Alzheimer's and other neurodegenerative
diseases."

About the APECS Study
APECS is a randomized,
placebo-controlled, parallel-group, double-blind Phase 3 clinical trial
evaluating the efficacy and safety of verubecestat in people with
prodromal AD. Subjects are randomized to receive placebo, or 12 mg or 40
mg verubecestat, once-daily. The primary efficacy outcome of the study
is change from baseline in the Clinical Dementia Rating Scale-Sum of
Boxes (CDR-SB) score following 104 weeks of treatment. For further
information please see NCT01953601 at www.clinicaltrials.gov.

About Merck
For more than a century, Merck, a leading global
biopharmaceutical company known as MSD outside of the United States and
Canada, has been inventing for life, bringing forward medicines and
vaccines for many of the world's most challenging diseases. Through our
prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies and animal health
products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries
to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our
commitment to increasing access to health care through far-reaching
policies, programs and partnerships. Today, Merck continues to be at the
forefront of research to advance the prevention and treatment of
diseases that threaten people and communities around the world -
including cancer, cardio-metabolic diseases, emerging animal diseases,
Alzheimer's disease and infectious diseases including HIV and Ebola. For
more information, visit www.merck.com
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Forward-Looking Statement of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA
This
news release of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA (the "company")
includes "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the safe
harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act
of 1995. These statements are based upon the current beliefs and
expectations of the company's management and are subject to significant
risks and uncertainties. There can be no guarantees with respect to
pipeline products that the products will receive the necessary
regulatory approvals or that they will prove to be commercially
successful. If underlying assumptions prove inaccurate or risks or
uncertainties materialize, actual results may differ materially from
those set forth in the forward-looking statements.

Risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to, general industry
conditions and competition; general economic factors, including interest
rate and currency exchange rate fluctuations; the impact of
pharmaceutical industry regulation and health care legislation in the
United States and internationally; global trends toward health care cost
containment; technological advances, new products and patents attained
by competitors; challenges inherent in new product development,
including obtaining regulatory approval; the company's ability to
accurately predict future market conditions; manufacturing difficulties
or delays; financial instability of international economies and
sovereign risk; dependence on the effectiveness of the company's patents
and other protections for innovative products; and the exposure to
litigation, including patent litigation, and/or regulatory actions.

The company undertakes no obligation to publicly update any
forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information,
future events or otherwise. Additional factors that could cause results
to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking
statements can be found in the company's 2016 Annual Report on Form 10-K
and the company's other filings with the Securities and Exchange
Commission (SEC) available at the SEC's Internet site (www.sec.gov).

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