November 12, 2009 ST. LOUIS, MO – C2N Diagnostics reported today that it has successfully accomplished each of the milestones defined under its partnership with the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) and ADDF’s affiliate, the Institute for the Study of Aging. Under the terms of the collaborative financing, ADDF awarded $300,000 to C2N for the purpose of readying the company to perform an industry-grade SILK-Aß™ assay.
“We are very grateful and appreciative for ADDF’s support,” reported Dr. Joel Braunstein, managing member of C2N. “Beginning in 2008, ADDF provided funding to us at a vital time in the company’s history. They made it possible for us to validate and optimize certain steps of the assay. Leaders within the pharmaceutical industry are now incorporating our SILK-Aß™ assay into their clinical development programs. In part through our work with ADDF, we can be confident that we have a robust assay to provide to industry partners.”
C2N’s SILK-Aß™ assay relies on stable isotope labeling and tandem mass spectrometry for the measurement of the kinetics, or in vivo metabolism, of amyloid-beta – a small peptide implicated as a key mediator of Alzheimer’s disease. The assay has potential to provide unparalleled sensitivity in clinical trials for evaluating the impact of disease-modifying drugs on neurally-derived Aß. Further, it can answer previously unanswerable scientific questions about the role of Aß and other proteins in the disease process.
Dr. Randall Bateman, one of C2N’s scientific co-founders and co-inventors of the platform technology, and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurology at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri added, “The ADDF is a pioneer in supporting the translational activities of investigators and emerging companies focused on new ways to fight Alzheimer’s disease. I expect C2N to return to the field techniques that will enable more accurate and rapid development of therapies to counter Alzheimer’s disease.”
Dr. Howard Fillit, executive director of ADDF, stated “C2N’s technology will have an important impact on Alzheimer's disease drug development. For the first time, it is possible to measure, in vivo in the human brain, the pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic effect of drugs on the metabolism of proteins relevant to Alzheimer's disease, such as beta-amyloid. C2N’s technology will have wide applications on other target proteins and in other neurodegenerative diseases of the central nervous system. We are pleased that C2N clearly delivered on their funded milestones, reflecting the excellence of their scientific and business management."
About Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive neurological disorder characterized by loss of memory and decline in basic mental ability. Though several drugs are available to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, none halt or modify disease progression. The risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease increases significantly with age. By the age of 85, approximately 1 out of 2 people likely have the disease. Alzheimer’s disease affects more than 20 million elderly people worldwide, and the incidence is likely to grow rapidly over the following decades. According to the Alzheimer’s Research Trust, an estimated 4.6 million new cases of Alzheimer’s are diagnosed each year worldwide, and roughly 500,000 of these occur in the United States alone.
About C2N Diagnostics
C2N Diagnostics, LLC formed in late 2007 by scientific co-founders Drs. David Holtzman and Randall Bateman of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, the Washington University Office of Technology Management, and LifeTech Research, a Maryland-based technology research and commercialization firm (www.lifetechresearch.com). C2N resides at the Center for Emerging Technology in St. Louis. The company is developing a suite of biomarker assays and tools to assist in pre-clinical drug discovery, clinical drug development, and the early detection and assessment of progression of debilitating neurodegenerative disorders. The company’s first commercial tool targets Alzheimer’s disease. Other products are in development to target Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, schizophrenia, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), among others. For more information, see www.c2ndiagnostics.com or call 1-877-C2N-DIAG (1-877-226-3424).
About the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF)
ADDF (www.alzdiscovery.org) is the only public charity whose sole mission is to accelerate the discovery and development of drugs to prevent, treat and cure Alzheimer’s disease, related dementias and cognitive aging. We award grants to leading scientists conducting breakthrough drug discovery research. ADDF uses a venture philanthropy model to bridge the worldwide funding gap between basic research and later-stage development, using any return on investment to support new research. Since 1998, we have received over 2,000 requests to fund new ideas for Alzheimer’s drugs. For all, we provided expert reviews and recommendations to advance their programs. We granted more than $36 million to fund more than 270 Alzheimer’s drug discovery programs in academic centers and biotechnology companies in 15 countries. ADDF has invested over $8 million in 35 biotechnology companies, which have received follow-on commitments of over $1 billion.