LAVAL, Quebec, Oct. 29, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Acasti Pharma ("Acasti") (Nasdaq:ACST) (TSX‑V:APO), a Neptune Technologies & Bioressources Inc.'s ("Neptune") subsidiary, announces that the U.S Patent & Trademark Office (the "USPTO") has allowed Acasti's composition and use patent application entitled Concentrated Therapeutic Phospholipid Compositions (the "Patent") (Publication number: US20110160161). Acasti expects this allowance to be the last step before the USPTO officially grants the Patent, which Acasti anticipates will occur by the end of 2013. The Patent relates to concentrated therapeutic phospholipid omega-3 compositions and covers methods for treating or preventing diseases associated with cardiovascular diseases, metabolic syndrome, inflammation, neurodevelopmental diseases, and neurodegenerative diseases. To date, Acasti's patent application has been filed in more than 40 jurisdictions worldwide. In addition to the USPTO's allowance, Acasti was recently granted a corresponding patent in South Africa, which is enforceable and valid until October 29, 2029. "Building and protecting our intellectual property is a key part of our business strategy and we believe today's announcement is another important achievement in growing this valuable asset," highlighted Dr. Harlan W. Waksal, M.D., Executive Vice-President Business and Scientific Affairs. "Together with Neptune, our composition patents should preclude others from entering the market with pharmaceutical omega-3 phospholipid concentrates. In addition, this new U.S. Patent should be enforceable and valid until October 29, 2029, which will extend the life of our U.S. patent portfolio." About Acasti Pharma Inc. Acasti is developing a product portfolio of proprietary novel long-chain omega-3 phospholipids. Phospholipids are the major component of cell membranes and are essential for all vital cell processes. They are one of the principal constituents of High Density Lipoprotein (good cholesterol) and, as such, play an important role in modulating cholesterol efflux. Acasti's proprietary novel phospholipids carry and functionalize the polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA, which have been shown to have substantial health benefits and which are stabilized by potent antioxidants. Acasti is focusing initially on treatments for chronic cardiovascular and cardiometabolic conditions within the medical food and prescription drug markets.