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Sep 6, 2011

CHDI and Galenea Ink Deal for Huntington Disease Research

  • Galenea will use its high-throughput synaptic transmission platform in a collaboration with CHDI Foundation intended to develop drugs that target the molecular underpinnings of cognitive and behavioral defects in Huntington disease (HD).

    Galenea and CHDI will look specifically at the mutant huntingtin protein. The collaboration will use Galenea’s two-pronged approach to identify and characterize the synaptic defects that occur in HD at both the neuronal and network levels.

    Galenea's platform consists of its Mantra™ (multiwell automated neuro transmission assay) system, a high-throughput screening assay that monitors synaptic events at the cellular level using primary neuronal cultures, as well as a system for establishing in vivo electroencephalography (EEG) measures of behaviors in rodent disease models by monitoring brain and behavioral activities.

    "We are excited to work with Galenea to determine whether EEG signatures in rodent HD models are reflective of the synaptic dysfunction seen in HD patients. Such information could significantly facilitate HD preclinical drug discovery efforts," adds George Yohrling, Ph.D., director, target assessment at CHDI.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

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