QUEBEC CITY, Nov. 11 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ - AEterna Zentaris Inc. (NASDAQ: AEZS; TSX: AEZ) (the "Company"), a global biopharmaceutical company focused on endocrine therapy and oncology, today announced that Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: KERX), its partner and licensee for perifosine (KRX-0401) in the North American market, will present data from a Phase 1/2 clinical trial of perifosine in combination with bortezomib (+/- dexamethasone), during a poster presentation session at the upcoming 51st Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH), to be held in New Orleans from December 5-8, 2009. The clinical data to be presented demonstrates the potential safety and efficacy of perifosine in the treatment of patients with relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma.
This abstract became available for viewing yesterday on the ASH website (www.hematology.org). At the time of the abstract submission in mid-August 2009, there were 84 patients enrolled in the study, of which 73 were evaluable for efficacy and are reported on within the abstract. Updated efficacy (response rate, time-to-progression and survival) and safety analyses, as of mid-November 2009, will be presented at the conference.
Perifosine is a novel oral anticancer agent that modulates several key signal transduction pathways, including Akt, MAPK, and JNK that have been shown to be critical for the survival of cancer cells. Perifosine has demonstrated both safety and clinical efficacy in several tumor types, both as a single agent and in combination with novel therapies. Perifosine is currently in Phase 2 clinical development for multiple tumor types, with a Phase 3 in multiple myeloma, under Special Protocol Assessment (SPA), pending commencement by year-end. Perifosine has also received Orphan Drug designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of multiple myeloma.
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.
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 required by a governmental authority or applicable law.Updated Analyses of Phase 1/2 Clinical Trial of Perifosine in Combination with Bortezomib (+/- Dexamethasone) to be Presented on Saturday, December 5, 2009
SOURCE AETERNA ZENTARIS INC.