Cowen Healthcare Completes Cetrotide Acquisition

AEterna Zentaris Inc. (Nasdaq: AEZS) has completed the previously-announced sale of its rights to royalties on future sales of Cetrotide to Cowen Healthcare Royalty Partners. The deal is valued at $52.5 million, plus another $2.5 million in possible earnouts. Cetrotide is a treatment for in virto fertilization.

 

PRESS RELEASE

AEterna Zentaris Inc. (NASDAQ: AEZS; TSX: AEZ), a global biopharmaceutical company focused on endocrine therapy and oncology, announces that it has completed the transaction under the previously announced purchase and sale agreement with Cowen Healthcare Royalty Partners, L.P. (“CHRP”) relating to AEterna Zentaris’ rights to royalties on future sales of Cetrotide(R) covered by its license agreement with Merck Serono. AEterna Zentaris received $52.5 million from CHRP at closing, less certain transaction costs. Under the terms of the agreement with CHRP, AEterna Zentaris would receive an additional payment of $2.5 million from CHRP contingent on 2010 net sales of Cetrotide(R) reaching a specified level.

 

About Cetrotide(R) (cetrorelix)

 

Cetrotide(R) (cetrorelix) was the first luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) antagonist treatment approved for in vitro fertilization. It is administered to women to prevent premature ovulation in order to increase fertility success rate. Developed in cooperation with Medicine Nobel-Prize winner, Professor Andrew Schally of Veterans Affairs, Miami, Florida, it was launched in Europe in 1999 and in the United States in 2001. Cetrotide(R) is currently marketed worldwide by Merck Serono, except for Japan where it is marketed by Nippon Kayaku and Shionogi.

 

Cetrorelix is also currently in a Phase 3 program in benign prostatic hyperplasia involving 1,500 patients in North America and Europe. First results are expected in Q3 2009 with an NDA filing to follow in 2010 and potential launch in 2011.

 

About Cowen Healthcare Royalty Partners

 

Cowen Healthcare Royalty Partners (“CHRP”) is a global healthcare private equity firm with over $500 million in capital under management. The firm invests principally in commercial-stage biopharmaceutical and medical device companies and products, through the purchase of royalty or Synthetic Royalty(SM) interests, debt and equity. CHRP’s investment team has over 90 years of healthcare related experience including principal investing, structured finance, healthcare industry senior management, Wall Street research and consulting, scientific and clinical experience. For more information, please visit www.cowenroyalty.com.

 

About AEterna Zentaris Inc.

 

AEterna Zentaris Inc. is a global biopharmaceutical company focused on endocrine therapy and oncology, with proven expertise in drug discovery, development and commercialization.

 

News releases and additional information are available at www.aezsinc.com.