September 28, 2012
Promentis Pharmaceuticals awarded $1.8 million grant to develop drugs for schizophrenia
MILWAUKEE – Promentis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced today that it has received a Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) award from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) of the National Institutes of Health. The three-year award, totaling $1.8 million, is the continuation of a Phase I SBIR grant received previously by Promentis to develop novel compounds to treat schizophrenia. The funding announced today will support in vitro and in vivo evaluation of a select group of promising Promentis compounds which target a novel mechanism in order to develop more effective treatments for schizophrenia and other central nervous system disorders. The NIMH funding will also support pre-IND work designed to take Promentis’ most promising approach - based on Promentis’ earlier work - through Investigational New Drug approval, up to Phase I clinical trials.
Promentis was founded in 2008 by Marquette faculty David Baker,
professor and associate chair of biomedical sciences, and John Mantsch,
professor and chair of biomedical sciences.
“We are very pleased to receive this significant award from the NIMH that will allow us to further evaluate Promentis compounds with demonstrated activity at our target and bring the most promising approach through the IND phase of our program,” said Daniel Lawton, President of Promentis. “This award will accelerate our development program and increase the likelihood that we can bring new and innovative therapies into the lives of patients, making a difference in a therapeutic setting where more effective treatments are desperately needed.”
Schizophrenia is a chronic, severe, and disabling brain disorder that affects about 1 percent of Americans and has been estimated to have a worldwide prevalence of .3 to .7%. Schizophrenia interferes with a person's ability to think clearly, manage emotions, make decisions and relate to others. The disease most commonly manifests itself with auditory hallucinations, paranoid or irrational delusions and disorganized speech and thinking, and is accompanied by significant social and cognitive dysfunction. The burden of schizophrenia extends beyond patients and includes families and caregivers, with a cost of care in the United States alone greater than $60 billion annually.
Promentis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a privately-held pharmaceutical company focused on discovering and developing therapeutics addressing CNS disorders with substantial unmet patient need. Promentis has obtained an exclusive license from Marquette University and the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee Research Foundation to certain intellectual property owned by Marquette University and the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee Research Foundation. Promentis also holds a significant portfolio of intellectual property developed by the Company itself.
Acknowledgement and Disclaimer
The research described above will be supported by the National Institute of Mental Health of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R44MH083417. The contents of this press release is solely the responsibility of the Company and does not represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.