The Gladstone Institutes and the international pharmaceutical company H. Lundbeck A/S have announced a collaborative research agreement to study and identify therapeutic candidates for neurological diseases. The agreement funds research at the Gladstone Center for Translational Research led by Gladstone investigator Katerina Akassoglou, PhD, and establishes the new Lundbeck Center for Neurovascular and Immuno-imaging at the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease.
Dr. Akassoglou's pioneering research on blood proteins identified novel targets for therapeutic intervention in neurological diseases. Dr. Akassoglou has also developed imaging techniques to study neurovascular diseases in vivo, which will enable a better understanding of the origins and progress of these diseases, and thus find more practical strategies for disease detection and treatment.
"Our research on the role of blood proteins in brain functions has identified new targets for therapeutic intervention in multiple sclerosis and other neurological diseases," said Dr. Akassoglou. "Collaborating with the outstanding scientists at Lundbeck, offers great hope for discovering what triggers these diseases and developing novel therapeutic agents."
"Through its basic research into the origins of neurological disease, Gladstone has built an impressive knowledge into potential strategies and targets for treating devastating neurological diseases, such as multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's disease," said Peter Høngaard Andersen, Executive Vice President of Research, H. Lundbeck A/S. "We are looking forward to applying new imaging technologies to help evaluate and translate these discoveries into patient benefits."
"Lundbeck is a truly visionary company with a well-focused strategy for building a pipeline to treat neurological disease," said Gladstone president R. Sanders Williams, MD. "We are enthusiastic about the potential of this important collaboration."
While the Gladstone Institutes was established in 1979 as an independent, non-profit biomedical research institute, the Gladstone Center for Translational Research was established in 2006 to move its most advanced discoveries into preclinical development with biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry partners. Examples of such collaborations include a research program with Merck on Alzheimer's disease and projects with Gilead and JT Pharma on HIV. The Taube-Koret Center for Huntington's Disease Research is another component that focuses on developing disease models and drug targets for Huntington's and related neurodegenerative disease.
Dr. Akassoglou's primary affiliation is with the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease where her laboratory is located and her research is conducted. Dr. Akassoglou is also associate professor of neurology at the University of California, San Francisco, associate adjunct professor of pharmacology at the University of California, San Diego, and director of the Center for Neurovascular and Immunoimaging at Gladstone.
About the Gladstone Institutes
The Gladstone Institutes is a nonprofit, independent research and educational institution, composed of the Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease, the Gladstone Institute of Virology and Immunology, and the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease.
Independent in its governance, finances and research programs, Gladstone shares a close affiliation with the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), through its faculty, who hold joint UCSF appointments.
H. Lundbeck A/S (LUN.CO, LUN DC, HLUKY) is an international pharmaceutical company highly committed to improve the quality of life for people suffering from central nervous system (CNS) disorders. For this purpose Lundbeck is engaged in the research and development, production, marketing and sale of pharmaceuticals across the world, targeted at disorders like depression and anxiety, schizophrenia, insomnia, Huntington's, epilepsies, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. Lundbeck was founded in 1915 by Hans Lundbeck in Copenhagen, Denmark, and employs today approximately 5,900 people worldwide. Lundbeck is one of the world's leading pharmaceutical companies working with CNS disorders. In 2009, the company's revenue was DKK 13.7 billion (approximately EUR 1.8 billion or USD 2.6 billion). For more information, please visit www.lundbeck.com.