8 March 2016
Parkinson’s disease: Prexton Therapeutics starts phase 1 clinical trial
First clinical trial with an mGluR4 positive allosteric modulator, a first-in-class compound for treating Parkinson’s disease, will assess safety and tolerability
Geneva, Switzerland, March 7, 2016 – Prexton Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company developing novel therapeutics for the treatment of CNS conditions, today announces the launch of a phase 1 clinical trial. Prexton Therapeutics is the first company to enter in man clinical trials with an mGluR4 positive allosteric modulator. The trial should be complete by mid 2016, with results expected in August 2016.
Prexton’s innovative approach in the treatment of Parkinson’s is unique as it stimulates a compensatory neuronal system that is not impacted by the disease. Competitors in this area mostly target the dopaminergic system, which does not address all symptoms and is accompanied by a number of adverse effects. Prexton’s compound activates a specific target of the glutamatergic system, with the goal of providing a robust therapeutic effect without the occurrence of adverse events. Thus, Prexton’s first in class treatment has the potential to offer a better benefit/risk ratio for Parkinson’s patients than existing therapies.
The company aims to develop a group of first-in class molecules that target the metabotropic Glutamate Receptor 4 (mGluR4), a protein belonging to the metabotropic glutamate receptor family. Preclinical data shows compelling evidence of efficacy for Prexton’s molecule. It has the potential to alleviate motor complications by modulating glutamate over activity in the central nervous system of Parkinson patients.
The phase 1 trial will include 72 subjects given ascending doses of the molecule, administered orally. The primary endpoint is to assess tolerability in healthy volunteers.
Prexton relies on a team of experienced researchers with expertise in CNS. The study will be financed by a $10 million (€8.86m) series A funding that closed in February 2015.
“We are delighted to launch this phase 1 clinical trial. We look forward to assessing the tolerability and safety of our first molecule and later to demonstrate the effectiveness of our treatment in Parkinson’s disease,” said François Conquet, CEO of Prexton Therapeutics. “Prexton is the leading company developing mGluR4 compounds for Parkinson’s. This study will further strengthen our position in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.”
Notes to Editors
About Parkinson’s disease
Parkinson’s disease is a chronic and progressive neurological disorder characterized by a number of symptoms including tremors, limb stiffness, slowness of movement and difficulties with posture and balance. Global figures show that 10 million people are affected by Parkinson’s disease with 200,000 being diagnosed each year. The incidence of the disease is expected to rise as the average age of the population increases. Today, the worldwide market for Parkinson’s disease is around $3bn (€2.66bn) (Global Business Insight, 2014). It is dominated by matured dopaminergic treatments, which frequently induce negative side effects. There is an overall consensus in the field supporting the development of more efficient approaches, while limiting or even abolishing the occurrence of adverse effects.
About Prexton Therapeutics
Prexton Therapeutics is a Swiss-based biopharmaceutical company, founded in 2012 by Francois Conquet and MS Ventures. The strategic venture capital fund of the healthcare business of Merck.. Prexton Therapeutics applies a new scientific approach that fully integrates molecular, behavioral and chemistry technologies to address Parkinson’s disease and other brain disorders. Prexton Therapeutics uses its powerful discovery platform to target specific noveln compounds focused on the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. www.prextontherapeutics.com