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Maas BiolAB: Cyclosporin Protects Brain Mitochondria at the 33rd Annual Society for Neuroscience Meeting

  [ 146 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ] • December 3, 2003


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 3, 2003--Maas BiolAB LLC and NeuroPharma AB Director of Research Eskil Elmer M.D., Ph.D., and research scientists Magnus Hansson M.D. and Roland Mansson M.D. exhibited and co-authored 3 poster presentations at the annual Society for Neuroscience Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana. Two of the presentations were the result of research stemming from Maas BiolAB/NeuroPharma's expertise in mitochondrial neuroprotectants.

The research revealed that brain mitochondria are specifically and powerfully protected by cyclosporins, through cyclosporins' unique ability to block the formation of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore or "megapore". Blocking this mitochondrial megapore prevents the release of mitochondrial apoptosis factors that activate caspases and turn on neuron suicide genes. Cyclosporins protect damaged neurons from dying, and have been shown to be potent neuroprotectants in models of acute brain attack including stroke, traumatic brain and spinal cord injury, and also the chronic neurodegenerative diseases of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Huntington's and ALS.

The first presentation "Brain-derived respiring mitochondria exhibit homogeneous, complete and cyclosporin-sensitive permeability transition" demonstrated that cyclosporin protects metabolically active brain mitochondria in particular, information important to demonstrating the mechanism by which cyclosporin protects the brain.

The second presentation "Minocycline does not inhibit calcium-induced mitochondrial permeability transition" analyzed minocycline, a putative neuroprotectant drug, and found it not to be effective via the mitochondria "megapore". Minocycline was assessed using the rapid and reliable screening techniques developed by Maas/NeuroPharma scientists to evaluate series of novel potential mitochondrial neuroprotectants.

Maas BiolAB LLC is a privately held Swedish-American neuropharmaceutical corporation with world patents for cyclosporin neuroprotection based in Albuquerque, NM, USA. Maas BiolAB is developing cyclosporin drugs for the neurodegenerative diseases of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Huntington's and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. NeuroPharma AB is a Maas corporate partner developing NeuroSTAT(TM), a proprietary, non-toxic intravenous cyclosporin product for traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury and stroke. NeuroPharma AB is in the Scandinavian Medicon Valley biotechnology center of Lund, Sweden, with close ties to the Wallenberg Neuroscience Center at Lund University. For more information please visit .

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