SAN DIEGO, CA, July 11, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Emerald Health Pharmaceuticals Inc. (EHP or the Company), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing a new class of medicines to treat diseases with unmet medical needs, announced today that Jim DeMesa, MD, and Lisa Sanford have resigned from their respective roles as CEO and director, and as CFO.
“We thank Jim as a co-founder and chief executive as well as Lisa for their leadership, focused commitment, and execution in building Emerald Health Pharmaceuticals into a clinical-stage biotechnology company,” said Jim Heppell, Chair of the Board.
Emerald Health Pharmaceuticals Inc. (“Company”), Jim DeMesa, and Lisa Sanford recently each received a “Wells Notice” from the staff (“Staff”) of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”). The Wells Notices stated that the Staff had made preliminary determinations to recommend that the Commission file enforcement actions against the Company, Jim DeMesa and Lisa Sanford, alleging violations of the anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws.
The Company is engaged in discussions with the Staff regarding the issues raised in the Wells Notices and has submitted a settlement proposal to the Staff. The Company cannot predict with confidence or certainty the ultimate outcome of the Commission’s process, including whether a settlement with respect to the issues raised in the Wells Notices may be reached with the Staff.
Dr. DeMesa’s resignation from the Board was not due to a disagreement with the Company and was provided solely in response to the Wells Notice.
Jim Heppell added, “The alleged federal securities law violations do not relate to the Company’s technology or intellectual property. The Board believes that Emerald’s unique technology has significant merit and value, and the Company is committed to developing its novel therapeutic candidates to potentially address diseases with unmet needs.”
About Emerald Health Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Emerald Health Pharmaceuticals is developing novel product candidates for the treatment of CNS, autoimmune, and other diseases. The company has two families of proprietary new chemical entities created through rational drug design to affect validated receptors and pathways in the body which are pertinent to targeted diseases. Its first drug candidate, EHP-101, has entered Phase 2a clinical development for the treatment of systemic sclerosis, a severe form of scleroderma, and multiple sclerosis. It has received Orphan Drug Designation in the US and EU for SSc. Its second product candidate, EHP-102, is in preclinical development and targeted to Parkinson’s disease and Huntington’s disease. It has received Orphan Drug Designation in the US and EU for Huntington’s disease.
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Forward Looking Statements
To the extent statements contained in this news release are not descriptions of historical facts regarding Emerald Health Pharmaceuticals Inc. they should be considered “forward-looking statements,” as described in the private securities litigation reform act of 1995, that reflect management’s current beliefs and expectations. You can identify forward-looking statements by words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecast,” “goal,” “hope,” “hypothesis,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “potential,” “predict,” “project,” “should,” “strategy,” “will,” “would,” or the negative of those terms, and similar expressions that convey uncertainty of future events or outcomes. Forward-looking statements contained in this news release include, but are not limited to, statements regarding: (i) the success and timing of our product development activities and clinical trials; (ii) our ability to develop our product candidates; (iii) our plans to research, discover, evaluate and develop additional potential product, technology and business candidates and opportunities; (iv) the anticipated timing of clinical data availability; (v) our ability to meet our milestones; and (vi) our expectations regarding our ability to obtain and maintain intellectual property protection. Forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown factors, risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements. We undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statements. Emerald Health Pharmaceuticals’ investigational drug products have not been approved or cleared by the FDA.