IRVINE, Calif., June 24 /PRNewswire/ -- Thuris Corporation has been awarded a Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
The grant is being used to further Thuris' development of therapeutics for select Orphan indications. Thuris' drug development efforts include extensive compound testing in the Company's proprietary RapidAging(TM) models.
"We are very pleased with the progress of our research on Central Nervous System diseases and with our ability to secure another round of external, peer-reviewed support," stated Keith B. Hoffman, Ph.D., Chief Operating Officer at Thuris. "This grant will expand the scope of our Orphan indication programs, one of which was previously subsidized by a BioSTAR grant."
RapidAging(TM) is the first system of its kind for testing anti- neurodegenerative drugs directly against primary pathologies in living brain tissue, including: neurofibrillary tangles, amyloid toxicity, inflammatory reactions, microglial activation, cellular viability, and others. Thuris' proprietary systems creates these hallmarks of various neurodegenerative disorders, including Huntington's disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Alzheimer's disease, etc. in just three to six days, enabling the rapid, precise testing of drug candidates against any or all of these targets -- chronically or acutely.
Thuris is focused on pharmaceuticals for select Orphan and niche indications, Alzheimer's disease, and Mild Cognitive Impairment. Three Orphan clinical programs are in development. Thuris has also won 510(k) FDA marketing clearance for a medical device to aid clinical trial enrollment and serve as an endpoint tool in Central Nervous System disorders. The non- invasive device will also help psychiatrists and neurologists to diagnose a broad range of brain-related conditions.
Thuris' drug development efforts originated from the company's in vitro and in vivo animal models that recreate the hallmarks of major neurodegenerative diseases in just days -- a significant leap forward for neuroprotective drug development.
Such advances have enabled Thuris to focus on developing mechanism-based compounds to treat select Orphan indications, Alzheimer's and Mild Cognitive Impairment. Thuris intends, through its co-development partnerships, as well as with its own in-house drug leads, to forward multiple anti- neurodegenerative therapeutics to the clinic. To this end, Thuris has partnered with Cephalon (USA; http://www.cephalon.com/), PRAECIS Pharmaceuticals (USA; http://www.praecis.com/), D-Pharm (Israel; http://www.dpharm.com/), Sigma-Tau Pharmaceuticals (Italy; http://www.sigma-tau.it/); the Chinese National Center for Drug Screening, SiniWest China, and Degussa BioActives (Germany; http://www.degussa.com/).
Thuris has also successfully developed a non-invasive medical device that will help diagnose psychiatric and neurological disorders over a broad range of brain-related conditions. Marketing clearance has been received from FDA for the device as a diagnostic aid for Central Nervous System disorders. Partners include RGM Electronics (Italy). Clinical trials are ongoing, and a beta version of the device will be sold in Italy in the third quarter of 2004. The NeuroGraph will be ready to use as a clinical trial enrollment and endpoint tool in July 2004.
For further information, please contact:
Keith B. Hoffman, Ph.D.
Chief Operating Officer