SYNAPCELL RE-ESTABLISHES PARTNERSHIP WITH THE UNIVERSITY OF UTAH
TO SCREEN NOVEL ANTI-EPILEPTIC MEDICATIONS
The University of Utah has awarded a subcontract to SynapCell as part of the NIH/NINDS Epilepsy Therapy Screening Program (ETSP). The partnership between SynapCell and the University of Utah will supplement the University’s ongoing Anticonvulsant Drug Development (ADD) Program to test the efficacy of promising anti-epileptic drug candidates in SynapCell’s proprietary MTLE (Mesial Temporal Lobe Epilepsy) mouse, a translational model of therapy-resistant epilepsy.
The ETSP’s contract to the ADD Program has since its inception in 1974 focused on the identification of promising new drug treatments for epilepsy and has made important contributions to the development of several FDA-approved drugs for epilepsy. Although there are a number of anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) on the market, the present challenge for new therapy development is to be able to differentiate promising new investigational AEDs from existing drugs and to discover treatments for yet-incurable diseases such as pharmaco-resistant epilepsies.
“We find in SynapCell a predictive rodent model of therapy-resistant MTLE that supplements our evaluation capabilities and addresses an important recommendation of the NINDS Working Group. SynapCell provides a team of investigators that possess unique knowledge and expertise in integrated electrophysiology and epilepsy. These competencies will increase the translational potential of investigational compounds and supplement evaluation capabilities of the University of Utah for the ETSP.” said Pr. Karen S. Wilcox, Chair of Pharmacology and Toxicology at University of Utah.
“Being selected for the second time in a row as the privileged partner of the Anticonvulsant Drug Development Program (ADD) of the University of Utah is a great honor for SynapCell. This confirms all the efforts our team has put together to become a strategic member of the program”, said Corinne Roucard, CEO of SynapCell, “We are very proud to provide the ETSP workflow with Go/NoGo decision criteria on compounds efficacy with our EEG-based screening tools, backed by over 11 years of best-in-class research and innovation on Epilepsy along with other CNS Disorders. This represents a major milestone in the discovery of novel anti-epileptic treatments that patients will benefit in the near future.”
SynapCell is an innovative biotechnology company providing CNS drug makers with translational drug discovery solutions combining EEG biomarkers and relevant rodent models. As a key partner in CNS drug discovery, SynapCell has evaluated in its epilepsy program a wide range of compounds for international pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies resulting in several clinical leads. Since 2015, the company has expanded its offer and capabilities on other major CNS disorders such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or Schizophrenia, providing its clients worldwide with additional decision-making capabilities to accelerate their CNS drug discovery.
For more information on SynapCell, please visit www.synapcell.com
About the University of Utah’s Anticonvulsant Drug Development (ADD) Program
The ADD Program has received continuous support from the ASP since 1975, when it was established as part of the National Institute of Health (NIH)’s response to public advocacy calling for improved treatment options for epilepsy patients. In collaboration with the ASP, the ADD Program has evaluated more than 30,000 investigational compounds and has participated in the development of the majority of new anti-epilepsy drugs introduced to clinical use in the United States during the past 30 years. The ADD Program is an integral part of the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology at the University of Utah, which is an internationally-recognized center of excellence in anticonvulsant research and development for more than 60 years. Departmental faculty have authored more than 600 epilepsy-related works, and many of the standard laboratory tests used to evaluate potential anti-epileptic drugs have evolved from these research efforts.
For more information on the University of Utah ADD Program, please visit: http://pharmacy.utah.edu/pharmtox/ADD/
About the subcontract
The “Screening of Investigational Compounds to Treat, Modify or Prevent Epilepsy for the NINDS Epilepsy Therapy Screening Program” supports the conduct of preclinical pharmacological evaluations of potential therapeutic agents for the treatment of epilepsy and related disorders. This award was made on the basis of full and open competition under RFP-NIH-NINDS-16-02.
Full potential contract term: 09/30/2016 through 09/29/2021 if all term options exercised.
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