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Alpha synuclein has long been viewed at “Public enemy #1” by the Parkinson’s research community. This sticky, abundant protein starts to cluster (or aggregate) in Parkinson’s.
There have been several attempts to reduce levels of the protein floating around outside of cells (using “immunotherapy” approaches)
But now clinical research is ramping up to determine if reducing aggregated alpha synuclein levels in the brain could help to slow/stop the progression of the condition.
In today’s post, we will look at three different lines of clinical research focused on small molecule inhibitors of alpha synuclein aggregation.
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When someone mentions the pharmaceutical firm Novartis, it feels like the company has been around forever, but it is actually not that old.
It was created in March 1996 via the merger of two Swiss companies: Ciba-Geigy and Sandoz. The roots of those companies can be traced back more than 250 years, but the combined entity is still a spring chicken compared to many of its major competitors.
The name Novartis results from the combination of two words “Nova Artes”, which means new art and innovation in simple forms, but there is little in what the company does that is ‘simple’. A good example of this was their block buster cancer drug Gleevec/Glivec (imatinib) which was developed by careful “rational drug design” for very specific types of cancer.
The reputation for Swiss precision seems to flow through this company and they are always making very carefully placed bets.
Which makes their news this week rather interesting.
What news did they have?