DURHAM – Drug development firm Novan is cutting 50% of its workforce – 39 employees – and is looking to sell or license some of its product lines.

The company (stock symbol NOVN) announced the moves after the markets closed on Wednesday. Two weeks ago, the company reported a larger than expected quarterly loss.

“We have been evaluating our portfolio of assets for some time to determine the optimal path for a product, if approved, to treat molluscum contagiosum, an unmet medical nee,” said CEO Paula Brown Stafford n a statement. “After careful consideration, we have made the strategic decision to implement a reduction in force of our commercial team and continue to explore a sale or out-license of our commercial assets.”

The hits are focused on Novan’s sales team.

Durham-based pharmaceutical firm Novan reports bigger losses than expected

“The restructuring of the Company’s commercial business, impacting 39 employees, results in a reduction in force of approximately 50% of employees of the Company, primarily among its field sales representatives,” Novan said in a statement. “The Company estimates that it will incur approximately $0.9 million in charges related to the reduction in force over a period of twelve months. The Company took this step to concentrate its resources on pursuing the regulatory approval for the Company’s berdazimer gel, 10.3% product candidate.”

However, cash is limited.

Novan said “existing cash and cash equivalents as of March 31, 2023, plus expected receipts associated with product sales from its commercial product portfolio, will provide it with liquidity to fund its planned operating needs into late June of 2023.”