In view of the ageing population, finding a cure for glaucoma, the first cause of irreversible blindness worldwide, remains a priority challenge of the EU.
Glaucoma is the result of neurodegeneration of the ganglionic cells of the optical nerve and is accompanied by an increase of the intra-ocular pressure within the eye cavity. While drugs that stabilize and or reduce intra-ocular pressure are quite efficient, it does not always stop neurodegeneration. In glaucoma models, dissociation of the microtubule associated protein tau from microtubules, was recently shown to be linked to the degenerative process. There is a single molecule on market, brimonidine, which beneficial effects remain controversial. While current pharmaceutical efforts focus on acting on tau itself, therapeutics that target the enzymes modifying the microtubules, have so far never been explored. In turn, the company develops compounds to prevent tau dissociation and restore its binding to microtubules. The solutions developed by the company are therefore unique in the healthcare landscape and open the road to novel class of medication
Based on breakthrough discoveries, proprietary technologies and unique expertise, the French company has developed first-in-class compounds that specifically target microtubule modifying enzymes. These compounds regulate the biophysical properties of the microtubule surface to favorize the binding of structural microtubule associated proteins and hence promote neuroprotection. The novel compounds that have been developed are aimed at stopping the process of neurodegeneration within the optic nerve, by targeting microtubule modifications.
SMEs and pharma industries specialized in biopolymers and/or surface chemistry are sought to contribute to develop and improve drug formulation and delivery solutions into the eye. The idea is to attach the compounds to matrices that allow efficient drug delivery intravitreally and follow the outcome in appropriate models to obtain proof of concepts.
According to the stage of development of the delivery system of the partner, research agreements for co-development or technical agreements in case of use of an existing solution will be made.