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CHARLESTON, S.C., June 06, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aeterna Zentaris Inc. (NASDAQ: AEZS) (TSX: AEZS) today announced that it is reducing the size of its German workforce and operations to more closely reflect the Company's ongoing commercial activities in Frankfurt.
This restructuring will affect eight employees in Frankfurt, Germany and is expected to result in approximately US$800,000 of severance costs that is expected to be paid by January 31, 2020.
The Company is also providing an update on the previously disclosed securities class action lawsuit pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, brought on behalf of shareholders of the Company. The lawsuit alleges violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 in connection with allegedly false and misleading statements made by the defendants between August 30, 2011 and November 6, 2014 regarding the safety and efficacy of Macrilen™ (macimorelin) and the prospects for the approval of the Company's New Drug Application for the product by the FDA. In February 2018, the U.S. court granted a motion for class certification in the case, and this week the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed an appeal of that certification motion that had been brought by the Company. The Company considers the claims that have been asserted in the lawsuit to be without merit and is vigorously defending against them. The Company cannot, however, predict at this time the outcome or potential losses, if any, with respect to this lawsuit. The Company continues to believe that substantially all of the costs for its defense will be borne by the insurers who provide directors' and officers' liability insurance to the Company, subject to policy limits.
About Aeterna Zentaris Inc.
Aeterna Zentaris Inc. is a specialty biopharmaceutical company engaged in commercializing novel pharmaceutical therapies, principally through out-licensing arrangements. Aeterna Zentaris is the licensor and party to a license and assignment agreement with Novo Nordisk A/S to carry out development, manufacturing, registration, regulatory, and supply chain for the commercialization of Macrilen™ (macimorelin). In addition, we are actively pursuing business development opportunities for macimorelin in the rest of the world and to monetize the value of our non-strategic assets.
This press release contains forward-looking statements (as defined by applicable securities legislation) made pursuant to the safe-harbor provision of the U.S. Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which reflect our current expectations regarding future events. Forward-looking statements may include, but are not limited to statements preceded by, followed by, or that include the words "will," "expects," "believes," "intends," "would," "could," "may," "anticipates," and similar terms that relate to future events, performance, or our results. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, including those discussed in this press release and in our Annual Report on Form 20-F, under the caption "Key Information -Risk Factors" filed with the relevant Canadian securities regulatory authorities in lieu of an annual information form and with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Known and unknown risks and uncertainties could cause our actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, our now heavy dependence on the success of Macrilen™ (macimorelin) and related out-licensing arrangements and the continued availability of funds and resources to successfully launch the product, our strategic review process, the ability of the Special Committee to carry out its mandate, the ability of Aeterna Zentaris to enter into out-licensing, development, manufacturing and marketing and distribution agreements with other pharmaceutical companies and keep such agreements in effect, reliance on third parties for the manufacturing and commercialization of Macrilen™ (macimorelin), potential disputes with third parties, leading to delays in or termination of the manufacturing, development, out-licensing or commercialization of our product candidates, or resulting in significant litigation or arbitration, and, more generally, uncertainties related to the regulatory process, our ability to efficiently commercialize or out-license Macrilen™ (macimorelin), the degree of market acceptance of Macrilen™ (macimorelin), our ability to obtain necessary approvals from the relevant regulatory authorities to enable us to use the desired brand names for our products, the impact of securities class action litigation or other litigation on our cash flow, results of operations and financial position, our ability to take advantage of business opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry, our ability to protect our intellectual property, the potential of liability arising from shareholder lawsuits and general changes in economic conditions. Investors should consult our quarterly and annual filings with the Canadian and U.S. securities commissions for additional information on risks and uncertainties. Given these uncertainties and risk factors, readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. We disclaim any obligation to update any such factors or to publicly announce any revisions to any of the forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect future results, events or developments, unless required to do so by a governmental authority or applicable law.
Chief Financial Officer
Aeterna Zentaris Inc.