ETP releases presentation highlights of 2010 Epilepsy Pipeline Update Conference

2010 Presentations Webcast Available at www.epilepsy.com

The Epilepsy Therapy Project (ETP), a non-profit organization dedicated to accelerating new therapies for people living with epilepsy, today released presentation highlights following its successful 2010 Epilepsy Pipeline Update Conference held in San Francisco.  Sponsored by ETP, this conference brings together leading clinical investigators, emerging CNS companies and academic innovators with investors and business development partners to facilitate professional collaboration, funding and partnerships that will accelerate patient access to new treatments.  The 2010 conference featured a stellar line up of leading drug and device developers, investigators and industry leaders who showcased the newest epilepsy therapies in development. The presentation webcasts have been posted online at http://www.epilepsy.com/etp/pipeline2010_webcasts.

"The current Epilepsy Therapy Pipeline demonstrates both progress and necessity for resources and collaboration to speed clinical development.  Epilepsy affects as many people as breast cancer or Alzheimer's disease, and still one million children and adults continue to have seizures despite available treatment," said Warren Lammert, ETP Founder and Chairman.  "We are gratified that the Epilepsy Pipeline Update Conference 2010 conference has grown to attract an impressive audience and companies are recognizing the need for and promise in developing potential new therapeutics to address the billion dollar epilepsy market."  

"Through this conference and ETP's own funding, matching and networking efforts, we hope to help bridge critical stages of development, and to identify and advocate for highly competitive pipeline programs that should be accelerated through development and to the patient.  We constantly monitor innovation and clinical progress in the epilepsy and CNS field to seek out deserving, high-value programs and we are dedicated to making this research available through our conference and also now online at www.epilepsy.com," said Joyce Cramer, President.  

The Epilepsy Therapy Pipeline programs featured in 2010 include some of the most innovative therapies in development today for epilepsy including a review of products from public companies such as Cyberonics, Eisai, Johnson & Johnson, King Pharmaceuticals, Lundbeck, Medtronic, Sepracor, Valeant Pharmaceuticals and UCB, as well as private companies such as Advanced Neurometrics, Marinus Pharmaceuticals, NeuroPace, NeuroTherapeutics, NeuroVista, Supernus Pharmaceuticals and Visualase.  Presentations included updates on:

  • 11 novel drugs (new molecular entities) or biologics (gene-based treatments) for epilepsy
  • 11 devices and hybrids to detect or prevent seizures, some by brain stimulation and others by direct drug delivery into the brain
  • Four companies described early clinical studies with drugs already evaluated for basic safety in humans
  • Seven companies described late-stage clinical studies of drugs ready to be submitted to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration for regulatory review
  • Six companies provided important updates on mechanism of action and potential new indications for  marketed drugs
  • Four research groups described new animal models or genetic approaches to understanding epilepsy treatment

Pipeline Presentations and Access to Expert Talks at www.epilepsy.com

In addition to the company presentations, leading experts in epilepsy addressed issues related to the development of important new therapies:  

  • Keynote speaker Henry Chesborough, Ph.D., Director, Center for Open Innovation, Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley, spoke on the concept of open innovation and the approach to developing new ideas in medicine.  
  • Robert Fisher, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Neurology, Stanford University, reviewed a number of approaches to extracranial and intracranial seizure detection and modulation, as well as other state-of-the-art devices for epilepsy and Ivan Osorio, M.D., Professor Neurology, Kansas University Medical Center, noted some of the hurdles to overcome in these approaches.  
  • Michael Rogawski, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Neurology, Center for Neuroscience, and Pharmacology and Toxicology Graduate Group, University of California, Davis School of Medicine, focused on small molecules, the promise of alternative approaches to drug delivery and the need for pharmaceutical companies to invest in this kind of epilepsy research.  
  • Roger Porter, M.D., Consultant, Adjunct Professor, University of Pennsylvania, noted that development is moving away from traditional sodium channel blockers and that clinical efficacy will be the sole determinant of the success of other mechanisms of action.  
  • H. Steve White, Ph.D., Director, Anticonvulsant Drug Development Program and Professor, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Utah, commented on the usefulness of currently available screening models for preclinical testing of compounds, and Stephen Collins, M.D., Ph.D., President, Chief Executive Officer, NeuroTherapeutics Pharma, Inc., noted that new models are being developed but have not yet been incorporated in the NIH testing program, thereby leaving a gap in the ability to evaluate drugs at work by novel mechanisms.  
  • C. James Cloyd, PharmD., Professor of Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology and Director, Center for Orphan Drug Research, College of Pharmacy, University of Minnesota, reviewed the commercial unmet need for drugs that treat specific syndromes in epilepsy, drugs that could potentially be developed as an orphan indication with extended patent protection.
  • Jacqueline French, M.D., Vice President for Clinical Research; Chair, Scientific Advisory Board; Professor of Neurology, NYU Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, New York University, commented on novel formulations and the rigor in getting them through regulatory approval.  
  • Joyce A. Cramer, President, Epilepsy Therapy Project, and Associate Research Scientist, Yale University School of Medicine, spoke on partnering with non-profit organizations as a business model for non-dilutive funding.  
Source:

Epilepsy Therapy Project

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