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CuroNZ Wins Support From National MS Society (USA) to Develop NRP2945 As Potential Therapy For Stopping Multiple Sclerosis Progression

14 October 2013.  CuroNZ, an Auckland biotechnology start-up company developing treatments for progressive multiple sclerosis, has been awarded funding of US$ 540,000 from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society through Fast Forward to support preclinical studies needed to develop CuroNZ’s NRP2945 candidate as a potential therapy to protect the nervous system from MS damage.

Current therapies available for treating multiple sclerosis do not adequately treat progressive stages of the disease or directly protect the nervous system from that damage that leads to progression.  

The funding will enable CuroNZ to undertake pre-clinical proof of concept, pharmacokinetic and toxicity studies to bring the drug candidate lead NRP2945 closer to an investigational new drug (IND) application. As part of the project, CuroNZ will collaborate with leading research organisations including the University of Auckland and Monash University in Melbourne.  With its unique mechanism of action and a pristine safety profile to date, NRP2945 has the potential to act as a neuroprotective agent which might eventually be developed into a product that can help patients with progressive MS, worldwide.

Finding ways to stop MS progression is a strategic priority of the National MS Society’s research program. A key aspect of the Society’s comprehensive approach to driving research progress is the support of promising research discoveries – such as NRP2945 -- toward commercial drug development.

About CuroNZ:

CuroNZ was founded in 2009 by Dr. Frank Sieg who discovered the drug candidate portfolio called Neural Regeneration Peptides (NRPs) in Germany. He subsequently brought them to New Zealand with the hope of being able to eventually develop products that could benefit patients suffering from the debilitating effects of progressive MS.

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis, an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system, interrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body.

About the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and Fast Forward, LLC

The Society mobilizes people and resources to drive research for a cure and to address the challenges of everyone affected by MS.  To fulfill this mission, the Society funds cutting-edge research, drives change through advocacy, facilitates professional education, collaborates with MS organizations around the world, and provides programs and services designed to help people with MS and their families move their lives forward.  In 2012 alone, through its home office and 50-state network of chapters, the Society devoted $122.1 million to programs and services that assisted more than one million people. To move us closer to a world free of MS, the Society also invested $43.3 million to support more than 350 new and ongoing research projects around the world. The Society is dedicated to achieving a world free of MS. Join the movement at www.nationalMSsociety.org.

Fast Forward, LLC was established by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society as part of a comprehensive approach to MS research and treatment, focusing on accelerating commercial development of promising research discoveries.  Through Fast Forward, the Society connects university-based MS research with private-sector drug development and funds small biotechnology/pharmaceutical companies to develop innovative new MS therapies and repurpose FDA-approved drugs as new treatments for MS. For more information, please visit http://www.nationalmssociety.org/fast-forward//index.aspx

Ends

For more information contact:

Dr Frank Sieg 64 21 500 453

Read the related press release from the MS Society below:

http://www.nationalmssociety.org/fast-forward/who-weve-funded/index.aspx

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