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Well-Validated, Pre-Clinical Success Shown in the Reduction of Alpha-Synuclein
New Compound Expands Seelos’ Parkinson's Portfolio
NEW YORK, March 07, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Seelos Therapeutics, Inc. (SEEL), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, announced today that it has acquired an exclusive license to intellectual property owned by The Regents of the University of California (The UC Regents) pertaining to a technology that was created by researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Such technology relates to a family of rationally-designed peptide inhibitors that target the aggregation of alpha-synuclein (α-synuclein). Seelos plans to study this initial approach in Parkinson's disease (PD) and will further evaluate the potential clinical approach in other disorders affecting the central nervous system (CNS).
This new program will be known as SLS-007. Pre-clinical data provide supportive evidence to slow progression – an early sign of disease-modifying potential in PD.
SLS-007 is a peptide-based approach, targeting the NACore (nonamyloid component core). Recent in-vitro and cell culture research have shown the ability to stop the propagation and seeding of α-synuclein aggregates against increased monomeric alpha-synuclein expression, fibril preparations of seeded alpha-synuclein, and alpha-synuclein seeds derived from patients diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease or Lewy Body Dementia. Seelos will evaluate the potential for in-vivo delivery of SLS-007 in a PD transgenic mice model. The goal will be to establish in-vivo PK/PD and target engagement parameters of SLS-007, a family of anti-alpha-synuclein peptidic inhibitors.
Raj Mehra, PhD, Chairman, Founder, and CEO of Seelos, stated, "Accumulation and aggregation of α-synuclein is a pathological hallmark of PD. Though its role is not completely understood, it appears pivotal in the pathogenesis of PD and other α-synucleinopathies such as dementia with Lewy bodies and multiple system atrophy. Reducing the levels of pathological forms of α-synuclein may alter the course of PD."
"Despite current available treatments for PD, including levodopa and deep brain stimulation, long-term outcomes for patients remain poor," said Tim Whitaker, MD, Head of R&D at Seelos. "With no disease-modifying treatments, and long-term use of established dopaminergic therapies resulting in both adverse events and side effects, significant need remains to develop not only a better means of restoring striatal dopamine but a safe and effective treatment that slows progression of the disease in patients with PD. If we are successful in our planned pre-clinical and future clinical studies, SLS-007 may prove to be such a treatment."
Under the terms of this exclusive license agreement, Seelos has made an upfront payment to The UC Regents/UCLA of $100,000 and will issue future remuneration in the form of royalties, which are contingent upon commercialization.
Alpha-synuclein (also α-synuclein) is a protein whose function in the healthy brain is currently unknown. It is of great interest to Parkinson's researchers because it is a major constituent of Lewy bodies, protein clumps that are the pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease.
In the several years since its discovery, alpha-synuclein has been the focus of intensive efforts by basic Parkinson's disease researchers working to definitively characterize the protein's role in Parkinson's and its potential as a target for neuroprotective therapies.
For more information on alpha-synuclein and its role in Parkinson's disease please visit: The Michael J. Fox Foundation: https://www.michaeljfox.org/understanding-parkinsons/living-with-pd/topic.php?alpha-synuclein
About Seelos Therapeutics:
Seelos Therapeutics, Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and advancement of novel therapeutics to address unmet medical needs for the benefit of patients with central nervous system (CNS) disorders and other rare disorders. The Company’s robust portfolio includes several late-stage clinical assets targeting psychiatric and movement disorders, including orphan diseases. Seelos is based in New York, New York.
For more information, please visit our website: http://seelostherapeutics.com , the content of which is not incorporated herein by reference.
This press release contains forward-looking statements subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected. Forward-looking statements include statements about the potential uses and benefits of SLS-007, a family of rationally-designed peptide inhibitors that target the aggregation of alpha-synuclein (α-synuclein) that are licensed by the Company from The UC Regents, and the Company’s plans with respect to developing SLS-007. Risks and uncertainties include risks associated with development of novel therapeutic programs generally, intellectual property and regulatory risks related to the development of SLS-007, risks related to the Company’s license agreement with The UC Regents, and additional risks set forth in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements represent the company's judgment as of the date of this release. The Company disclaims, however, any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.
Head of Corporate Communications
Seelos Therapeutics, Inc.