Mitochon Pharmaceuticals today is pleased to announce the receipt of a $500,000 grant in conjunction with the University of Kentucky for “Advancement of Drugs for the Treatment of Repeated Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI)” through a joint funded program by an Alzheimer’s Disease group, BrightFocus Foundation and a military focused foundation, Medical Technology Enterprise Consortium (MTEC). The money will be used to advance Mitochon’s second compound MP-201 through IND enabling studies and provide further evidence that MP-201 can protect brain cells from mild traumatic events that often lead to cognitive issues later in life, such as Alzheimer’s and other dementias.
“We are delighted to receive his prestigious award with the University of Kentucky and look forward to building the dossier for MP-201 a mitochondrial targeting compound in Traumatic Brain Injury. Previous work has shown that MP-201 has neuroprotective and cognitive enhancing properties. This award will pave the way for human studies and hopefully a disease modifying treatment for both the military and civilians,” says Dr. John Geisler, Ph.D., CSO/co-founder of Mitochon Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
MP-101 and MP-201 are mitochondrial targeted, once-a-day, oral therapies that have been shown to shield cells from damage caused by a host of degenerative processes, including traumatic injury. In preclinical studies, these compounds have exhibited striking protective and functional benefits in disease models, including brain volume sparing in Huntington’s Disease; axonal protection from demyelination in Multiple Sclerosis, preserving the neuromuscular junction and motor skills in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), and preserving neurons in the cortex after blunt trauma.
This project will be spearheaded by world renown mitochondria and TBI expert Dr. Patrick Sullivan at the University of Kentucky, along with his esteemed colleague Dr. Brad Hubbard, an expert in military relevant TBI modeling. “We are very excited about the potential of MP-201 as our research clearly shows a link between mitochondrial dysfunction and TBI. Ameliorating this dysfunction in a repeated model of mild head trauma using the novel compound MP-201 may illuminate new targets to unlink TBI and Alzheimer’s disease progression,” says Dr. Sullivan. “Our previous research indicates that mitochondrial impairment is a key mediator of worsened response to repeated mild head impacts. MP-201 is the ideal treatment to target these early mechanisms after TBI to enact long-term improvement of function.”
Furthermore, Diane Bovenkamp, PhD, Vice President for Scientific Affairs at BrightFocus Foundation, and Lauren Palestrini, Ph.D. Director of Research of MTEC, says, “We are especially pleased with this novel grant mechanism developed jointly between the military and BrightFocus. Together we wish the Mitochon/University of Kentucky team well and look forward to helping today’s TBI patients that often develop into tomorrow’s Alzheimer’s patient.”
The Medical Technology Enterprise Consortium (MTEC) is a 501(c)(3) biomedical technology consortium collaborating under an Other Transaction Agreement (OTA) with the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command (USAMRDC) that serves those who serve our nation. To find out more about MTEC, visit mtec-sc.org.
About BrightFocus Foundation
BrightFocus Foundation is a premier source of private research funding to defeat Alzheimer’s, macular degeneration, and glaucoma. The organization has supported over 275 projects, a $60 million investment, over the past three years alone to find the cures for diseases of mind and sight. It shares the latest research findings and best practices to empower families impacted by these diseases. Please visit BrightFocus.org for more information.