PITTSBURGH, May 21, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Cognition Therapeutics Inc. (CogRx), an innovative research and drug discovery organization focused on the development of novel disease-modifying therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases, announced today that its small molecule soluble Abeta receptor antagonist program for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) has been selected for funding by the National Institute on Aging (NIA)/NIH Alzheimer’s Disease Drug Development Program (U01). This Cooperative agreement program for Alzheimer’s disease translational research will provide CogRx with an estimated $1.4M in funding over four years to support critical drug development activities aimed at securing Investigational New Drug status for the Company’s first-in-class therapeutics.
“We are fortunate to have been selected for this highly competitive grant,” said Dr. Susan Catalano, Founder and Chief Science Officer of Cognition Therapeutics. “This award reflects NIA’s renewed commitment to finding truly novel approaches to treating Alzheimer’s disease. Our therapeutics have the potential to not only modify behavioral symptoms in patients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease but to prevent or slow disease progression.”
“Small molecule drugs that directly target the binding and pathogenic signaling of soluble oligomers of the Abeta protein represent a potentially important clinical tool to address both the symptoms and disease progression in patients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease,” said Dr. Cynthia Lemere, Associate Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School and an Associate Neuroscientist at Brigham & Women’s Hospital in the Center for Neurologic Diseases. “Cognition Therapeutics’ novel therapeutic candidates provide renewed hope that we can treat Alzheimer’s disease in diagnosed patients which is very good news for these patients and their caregivers.”
Five million Americans age 65 and older are living with Alzheimer’s. Someone develops AD every 68 seconds and by 2050 it will be every 33 seconds. These figures combined with the lack of any approved drugs that can slow or halt disease progression makes Alzheimer’s disease our most significant unmet medical need. Small molecule drugs that can significantly block and disrupt the binding and pathogenic signaling of the toxic forms of Abeta protein have the potential to dramatically improve the quality of life for Alzheimer’s patients and their caregivers.
About CogRx’s Small Molecule Soluble Abeta Receptor Antagonist Program
CogRx has discovered small molecule drug candidates that can dramatically reduce toxic Abeta oligomer binding to receptor proteins on the brain cells at synapses by over 90%. CogRx drug candidates reverse the memory loss seen in transgenic mice engineered with human Alzheimer’s genes after only one month of treatment and sustain this memory improvement long term. Validation that these candidates can displace human Abeta oligomers from brain slices from Alzheimer’s patients was recently presented at AAN 2014 (Neurology April 8, 2014, vol. 82, no.10 Supplement |11-1.001). These drug candidates represent the first small molecule receptor antagonists ever reported to target these toxic oligomer proteins and their receptors and stop their bad effects on memory.
Cognition Therapeutics is a private Pittsburgh-based biotechnology company using disease-relevant screening and novel chemistry platforms to produce a pipeline of new approaches for protein-based nervous system diseases. CogRx’s leading clinical candidate-stage program is a highly brain-penetrant orally bioavailable small molecule receptor antagonist that stops memory deficits in Alzheimer’s disease models.