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AEterna Zentaris: New Data Published on its Ghrelin Antagonist Compound, AEZS-123 (JMV2959), Supports its Use in Alcohol Addiction
Date:7/7/2009

ion said, "Ghrelin's action in the brain may be of importance for several addictions, including chemical drugs such as alcohol and even food."

Daniel Perrissoud, Senior Director of Project Management at AEterna Zentaris and one of the authors of the paper stated, "The discovery of the Gothenburg team that the reward system is a target of ghrelin effects, opens new development opportunities for our proprietary ghrelin receptor antagonists. In the field of addiction, the clinical proof of efficacy can be obtained in a more time- and cost-effective manner than in the field of obesity, as short-term clinical laboratory paradigms can be used for the clinical evaluation."

The article entitled, "Requirement of Central Ghrelin Signaling for Alcohol Reward" appears today in the July 7, 2009 issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS 2009; 106:11318-11323) and was published on line on June 29, 2009 in the early edition of the journal.

About AEterna Zentaris' Ghrelin Antagonist Program

Ghrelin is a natural peptide hormone produced by the stomach that increases appetite and induces accumulation of fat tissue. The discovery of ghrelin and its receptors opens up new opportunities for the treatment of obesity and eating disorders through the use of ghrelin antagonists to suppress appetite and fat deposition.

In 2004, AEterna Zentaris signed two agreements for the development of ghrelin antagonists with the Institut des biomolecules Max Mousseron of the University of Montpellier, France, directed by Prof. Jean Martinez, and with the Department of Experimental and Environmental Medicine of the University of Milan, Italy, directed by Prof. Vittorio Locatelli. The research projects were targeting the chemical synthesis and pharmacological investigation of new compounds acting as ghrelin antagonists.

In 2006, AEterna Zentaris reported first in vivo pharmacological data on the capability of proprietary
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