QUEBEC CITY, March 26 /CNW Telbec/ - AEterna Zentaris Inc. (TSX: AEZ;
NASDAQ: AEZS) a late-stage, global biopharmaceutical company focused on
endocrine therapy and oncology, announced today the appointment of
David J. Mazzo, Ph.D. as President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO),
effective on April 9, 2007. Dr. Mazzo succeeds Gilles Gagnon who is leaving
his position, effective today, as President and CEO and as a member of the
Board of Directors. However, Mr. Gagnon will continue to work with the Company
as a consultant.
"On behalf of our entire management team and the Board, I extend my
thanks to Gilles for his tireless efforts, commitment and significant
contributions. Gilles has played a key role in the growth and current
positioning of the Company since he joined in 1999 and then became the
President and CEO in 2003," said Dr. Eric Dupont, Executive Chairman of
AEternaZentaris. "We are pleased that Gilles is maintaining his involvement by
acting as a special advisor to the Company and, therefore, will continue to
contribute to our success."
Dr. Mazzo has spent more than 20 years in the pharmaceutical industry and
is recognized for his leadership and strong scientific and regulatory
expertise. He joins the Company from Chugai Pharma USA where he has been
President and CEO since April 2003. Dr. Mazzo has broad experience working in
a variety of multi-cultural environments in the USA, Europe and Asia where he
amassed a track record of successful global product development, registration
and launch. He has held positions of increasing responsibility with Merck,
Baxter, Rhône-Poulenc Rorer, Hoechst Marion Roussel and Schering-Plough.
Dr. Mazzo holds a B.A. in Honors (Interdisciplinary Humanities) and a B.S. in
Chemistry from Villanova University, as well as an M.S. in Chemistry and a
Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Massachusetts (Amherst).
He further complemented his American education as a Research Fellow at the
Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland.
"The Board is delighted to have an executive with Dave's proven
leadership credentials, successful drug development track record and
commercialization experience at the helm as President and CEO," added
Dr. Dupont. "We will benefit tremendously from his significant industry
experience along with his scientific expertise. Dave is clearly the ideal
person to lead the Company through this critical juncture in our emergence as
a fully integrated biopharmaceutical company."
Dr. Mazzo added, "I am thrilled with this new opportunity and am very
much looking forward to leading AEterna Zentaris through a period of
significant and sustained growth and product success. My vision is to build a
leading biopharmaceutical company by leveraging the solid foundation that has
been established thus far while realizing the full potential of our robust
In order to further consolidate its position in the United States, the
Company expects to open shortly an office in New Jersey.
About AEterna Zentaris Inc.
AEterna Zentaris Inc. is a growing global biopharmaceutical company
focused on oncology and endocrine therapy with proven expertise in drug
discovery, development and commercialization.
News releases and additional information are available at
This press release contains forward-looking statements made pursuant to
the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Securities Litigation Reform Act of
1995. Statements that are not historical facts, including statements preceded
by, followed by, or that include the words "believes", "anticipates",
"intends", "plans", "expects", "estimates", "will," "may", "should",
"approximately", and the negative or other variations of those terms or
comparable terminology, are forward-looking statements. Such statements
reflect management's current views, intentions, strategies and plans and are
based on certain assumptions.
Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and
uncertainties, which could cause the Company's actual results to differ
materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Such risks and
uncertainties include, among others, the ability of AEterna Zentaris to
implement its business strategies, the availability of funds and resources to
pursue R&D projects, the successful and timely completion of clinical studies,
the ability of AEterna Zentaris to take advantage of business opportunities in
the pharmaceutical industry, uncertainties related to the regulatory process
and general changes in economic conditions. Investors should consult the
Company's quarterly and annual filings with the Canadian and U.S. securities
commissions for additional information on risks and uncertainties relating to
the forward-looking statements. Investors are cautioned not to rely on these
forward-looking statements. The Company does not undertake to update these
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