Amarantus BioScience, Inc. reported positive preclinical data for its lead therapeutic MANF in neuroprotection 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) rat models of Parkinson’s disease. The data show that MANF protects the integrity of dopamine producing neurites in the striatum.
“Our scientists are excited by this data, which not only demonstrates the efficacy of MANF, but its superiority to GDNF, as well,” said Gerald E. Commissiong, President and Chief Executive Officer of Amarantus BioScience. “Based on this study, we believe MANF plays a role in maintaining brain connectivity, specifically the dopaminergic system of the basal ganglia network, which reinforces the potential of MANF as a disease-modifying treatment for Parkinson’s.”
In the neuroprotection study, MANF was delivered into the substantia nigra shortly before injection of the toxin 6-OHDA into the striatum. Four weeks later the animals were sacrificed and the density of dopaminergic neuron projections in the striatum was determined. The protection of neuron health, as measured by the density of neurite terminals, was evident in all three areas of the striatum examined.
The effects of a single MANF treatment were evident after four weeks, indicating the effects of MANF protection are sustained. Furthermore, the highest level of neurite density was found at the highest dosage of MANF. Importantly, the neurite density measured under treatment with MANF was statistically significantly better than shown for both vehicle control and a standard dosage of Glial cell-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (GDNF). GDNF is currently in clinical trials for Parkinson’s disease and considered the current benchmark in the field. The data summarized here suggests that MANF may have advantages over GDNF for the clinical treatment of Parkinson’s disease.
“The data on MANF continues to return more favorable results than other molecules currently in clinical development as disease-modifying treatments for Parkinson’s disease,” said Dr. Joseph Rubinfeld, Amgen co-founder and current member of the Company’s Board of Advisors. “We intend to conduct select additional experiments to understand why this appears to be the case while we continue the IND-enabling studies that have already been initiated. We believe these additional data points will further distinguish MANF from competitors in the field, and will deliver significant value in the near-term.”