AEterna Zentaris Announces Appointment of Prof. Jurgen Engel, Ph.D. as New President and CEO

    QUEBEC CITY, Aug. 12 /CNW Telbec/ - AEterna Zentaris Inc. (NASDAQ:   AEZS,
TSX: AEZ), a global biopharmaceutical company focused on endocrinology and
oncology, announced today the appointment of Prof. Jurgen Engel, Ph.D. as its
new President and CEO, effective as of September 1, 2008. Prof. Engel is
currently Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer of AEterna
Zentaris. He succeeds Juergen Ernst, who had been acting as Interim President
and CEO since April 2008. Mr. Ernst, current Chairman at AEterna Zentaris,
will become Executive Chairman as of September 1, 2008.
    "As a seasoned executive for many years at AEterna Zentaris, Prof. Engel
has gained a deep knowledge of the Company's activities at all levels. We feel
that his extensive expertise in drug development and commercialization as well
as in strategic partnerships, make him the ideal person to lead the Company,"
said Mr. Ernst.
    Prof. Engel added, "I am thrilled with this new challenge and will
continue to dedicate all efforts to the successful development of our deep
pipeline, especially the ongoing pivotal Phase 3 program in benign prostatic
hyperplasia with our lead compound, cetrorelix."
    Prof. Engel has been Chief Executive Officer of Zentaris AG since the
beginning of 2001. Before joining AEterna Zentaris in December 2002, he was in
charge of all R&D activities at ASTA Medica AG where he supervised more than
700 scientists and clinical professionals.
    Prof. Engel holds a doctorate degree in organic chemistry from the
Technical University of Braunschweig and an academic degree in pharmaceutical
science from the University of Regensburg where he is an adjunct full
professor at its School of Pharmacy. He is also Honorary Professor at the
Dresden Technical University. In 1995, he received the Galenus-von-Pergamon
prize for having developed alkylphospholipids as a new class of anti-tumor
agents. Prof. Engel is the author of more than 250 scientific articles,
several books and he applied for more than 100 patent applications.

    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

    Forward-Looking Statements

    This press release contains forward-looking statements made pursuant to
the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Securities Litigation Reform Act of
1995. 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 availability of funds and resources
to pursue R&D projects, the successful and timely completion of clinical
studies, the ability of the Company 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 forward-looking statements. We disclaim any
obligation to update any such factors or to publicly announce the result of
any revisions to any of the forward-looking statements contained herein to
reflect future results, events or developments except if we are requested by a
governmental authority or applicable law.

For further information:

For further information: Investor Relations: Dennis Turpin, CA, Senior
Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, (908) 626-5503,; Media Relations: Paul Burroughs, Director of
Communications, (418) 652-8525 ext. 406,

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