Gryphon Bio, Inc.
Mon Sep 30 2019 07:00:00 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)
Gryphon Bio Receives Department Of Defense Grant Awards To Advance Critical Research In Traumatic Brain Injury, Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias, and Epilepsy
South San Francisco, CA – Friday, February 28, 2020– Gryphon Bio, Inc. today announced more than $1.1M in Department of Defense (DOD) Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP)-sponsored research multi-year grant awards with the 1Department of Emergency Medicine and the McKnight Brain Institute at University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida; 2Department of Neuroscience, Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche Mario Negri IRCCS, Milano, Italy; and 3the Department of Anesthesia at Cambridge University. The first of these two grant awards is a Peer Reviewed Alzheimer’s Research Program (PRARP) Convergence Science Research Award entitled “Anti-Tau DNA Aptamers: Robust Research Resources for Precision Medicines”. There are more than 2 million new mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) patients each year in the U.S. alone. Recently, it was discovered that mild TBI might result in harmful accumulation of a protein called Tau that has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease (AD). It is hypothesized that short strands of DNA called oligonucleotides (oligos) can be engineered to be stable in blood, cross the blood-brain-barrier, bind and neutralize the negative effects of Tau. If validated by this research, then two important new tools will be available to scientists and physicians. First, anti-Tau DNA oligos might be used to precisely measure Tau in the blood of TBI and AD patients. Second, anti-Tau DNA oligos might be used as medicines to reduce the harmful accumulation of Tau in TBI and AD patients. In this way, anti-Tau DNA oligos might lead to the first therapeutics to improve the lives of TBI and AD patients. The second of these two grant awards is a Epilepsy Research Program (ERP) Idea Development Award entitled “Combinatorial Biosignatures of Network Dysfunction to Predict Post-Traumatic Epilepsy: Clinical Translation from a Robust Mouse Model”. Brain trauma is a major cause of death and disability that affects people of all ages. One of the major and disabling neurological sequelae of brain trauma is the development of epilepsy. There is often a prolonged period of time between the trauma and the development of epilepsy. This delay in onset offers an ideal time for therapeutic interventions aimed at preventing or arresting the disease. However, there is no straightforward way to predict which individuals among trauma survivors will develop epilepsy and when this will happen. Therefore, there is urgent need for biological markers that could be used to identify the at-risk patients, enable the design of affordable clinical studies, and potentially lead to better prevention and care for post traumatic epileptic patients. In this project, the team plans to investigate whether the changes in the brain that lead to epilepsy by using in vivo imaging and measurements of selected blood molecules. The aim is to identify key measures predictive of epilepsy development. According to Gryphon Bio CEO Will Haskins, “These grant awards provide critical funding needed to advance leading-edge brain medicines for unmet medical needs.”