Monday, February 14, 2011

Small Molecule c-jun-N-Terminal Kinase Inhibitors Blocks Brain Cell Destruction in Parkinson's Disease - a new hope !

Scientists from the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute have produced the first known compound to show significant effectiveness in protecting brain cells directly affected by Parkinson's disease, a progressive and fatal neurodegenerative disorder.  Although the findings were in animal models of the disease, the effectiveness of the compound, combined with its potential to be taken orally, offers the tantalizing possibility of a potentially useful future therapy for Parkinson's disease patients.  As per the claim by the lead researcher, Prof. Philip LoGrasso,   the compelling data on the first oral, brain-penetrating inhibitor to show significant efficacy in preventing neurodegeneration in both mouse and rat models of Parkinson's disease.
The new small molecule labeled SR-3306  is aimed at inhibiting a class of enzymes called c-jun-N-terminal kinases (JNK). Pronounced "junk," these enzymes have been shown to play an important role in neuron (nerve cell) survival. As such, they have become a highly viable target for drugs to treat neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's disease.
The SR-3306 compound, which has been in development at Scripps Florida for several years, performed well in both cell culture and animal models. In cell culture, the compound showed greater than 90 percent protection against induced cell death of primary dopaminergic neurons, while in mouse models of induced neuron death, the compound showed protective levels of approximately 72 percent.
 "It was a surprise that level of neuroprotection reduced the behavioral impact so strongly," LoGrasso said, "but it's indicative of how it might perform in human patients. While SR-3306 doesn't represent a cure, it does appear to have the potential of stopping the progression of the disease."….

No comments: