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GEN News Highlights : Jan 20, 2011

UCI Grants Repligen License to Develop HDAC3 Inhibitors for Memory Disorders

University-published animal model research suggests one of Repligen’s compounds improves long-term memory.

The University of California, Irvine (UCI) has granted Repligen an exclusive license to IP covering the use of histone deacetylase 3 (HDAC3) inhibitors for treating memory-related disorders, including Alzheimer disease, memory impairment, and post-traumatic stress disorder. The patent-filed IP is based on research in animal models by UCI’s Marcelo A. Wood, Ph.D., which suggested that one of Repligen's HDAC3 inhibitors improves both the acquisition and persistence of long-term memory. This work was published just last week in the Journal of Neuroscience, in a paper titled "HDAC3 is a Critical Negative Regulator of Long-Term Memory Formation".

Under terms of the licensing deal with Repligen, UCI will receive an up-front payment, development milestones, and royalties relating to its licensee’s development and commercialization of an HDAC3 inhibitor for certain memory disorders.

“These new data indicate that HDAC3 inhibitors should be further evaluated for use in a variety of disorders in which the acquisition or extinction of long-term memory is a factor,” suggests Walter C. Herlihy, Repligen president and CEO. “We intend to continue to investigate the potentialof our selective HDAC3 inhibitors in a variety of disease models.”

Repligen’s current pipeline includes the HDAC3 inhibitor RG2833, which is in preclinical development for the treatment of inherited neurodegenerative diseases such as Friedreich's ataxia. Repligen has filed an IND application with FDA for approval to start a Phase I study of RG2833.