Halle (Saale), Germany //
Probiodrug AG, a developer of small molecule inhibitors for the treatment of inflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases, announced today that the United States Patent Office issued to Probiodrug the US patent no. 7,381,537, the first patent covering broad methods of treating Alzheimer’s disease using compounds that inhibit mammalian glutaminyl cyclase (QC).
“We are very pleased about this patent as QC inhibition is at the core of our new treatment paradigm in Alzheimer’s disease”, said Hans-Ulrich Demuth, CSO and co-founder of Probiodrug. “This is the first patent covering a method that has the potential to be a frontline therapy for Alzheimer’s disease.”
“Probiodrug has a strong intellectual property program with over 160 patent applications for broad coverage of QC inhibitors, including composition of matter, formulations, and methods of treatment claims,” says Matthias Hoffmann, VP Operations and Head of Intellectual Property. “These methods of treatment claims add to two U.S. patents issued to Probiodrug in April and May 2008, which cover the first small molecule inhibitors of glutaminyl cyclase.”
Probiodrug is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of innovative small molecule drugs for the treatment of neuronal, inflammatory, and autoimmune diseases. In these areas, Probiodrug is focusing on innovative targets with the prospect of first and best in class therapeutics.
The Company has a dominant position in the area of glutaminyl cyclase inhibition, an enzyme central for the pathogenesis of Alzheimer ‘s disease (AD). In this field, Probiodrug is pioneering a completely novel therapeutic approach. In addition, the company is pursuing further novel approaches in the area of inflammatory diseases.
Probiodrug has generated evidence that glutaminyl cyclase, an enzyme that cyclizes N-terminal glutamine of peptides to pyroglutamate (pGlu), is massively overexpressed in the brain of patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The company has also demonstrated that pyroglutamated derivatives of the amyloid beta (Aß) peptide are much more toxic and degradation-resistant than unmodified Aß peptides and that they form the very seeds of the typical Aβ plaques seen in the brain of AD patients. Moreover, in animal models of AD inhibitors of QC reduce both pGlu-Aß and total Aß, and improve memory.
Probiodrug’s core expertise is based on its long-standing, unique experience with the structure and function elucidation of enzymes central for the maturation of hormones. The company has pioneered the field of DP4-inhibition for the treatment of type-2 diabetes. Compounds and technology patents of its DP4 (dipeptidyl peptidase 4) program in diabetes were licensed to various pharmaceutical companies. In 2004, all metabolic assets were sold to (OSI) Prosidion. The first drug based on Probiodrug’s technologies reached the market in late 2006. The proceeds of these transactions have been reinvested to fund the novel approach for the treatment of AD.
The Company was founded in 1997 by Dr Konrad Glund and Prof Dr Hans-Ulrich Demuth and has raised a total of $52 million. In 2007, it acquired Ingenium Pharmaceuticals AG. The company is located in Halle (Saale), Germany, and operates a subsidiary in Martinsried/Munich, Germany. For more information, please visit www.probiodrug.de.
Dr Konrad Glund, CEO
D-06120 Halle (Saale)
Tel.: +49 345 55599-00
Fax: +49 345 55599-01
Dr Ludger Weß
Obere Hauptstr. 9a
Tel.: +49 8165 809724
Fax: +49 8165 901795