Biopharmaceutical company Intellect Neurosciences Inc. has an internal and preclinical and clinical-stage pipeline and licenses with major pharmaceutical companies. The company has patents in Europe, Japan, China among others, as well as pending patents in the United States.

The company today announced that the European Patent and Trademark Office has granted a patent to the company’s chairman and CEO Dr. Daniel Chain for the use of insulin sensitizers to prevent and treat memory loss and dementia, marking Dr. Chain’s second European patent award.

The insulin sensitizer drugs include Rosiglitazone and Pioglitazone, which have been approved for the treatment of type II diabetes mellitus.

Dr. Chain applied for this patent prior to founding Intellect in 2005, and the company has the option to acquire the patent from its current owners. Dr. Chain co-invented the patent with Professor Mike Cawthorne, director of Metabolic Research, Clore Laboratory at The University of Buckingham and leader of the research team that originally discovered Rosiglitazone as a diabetes treatment.

Dr. Chain said that he and Dr. Cawthorne would like to see advances in Alzheimer’s disease treatment and associated memory loss.

“Dr. Cawthorne and I are pleased by the grant of a new patent in Europe relating to this novel approach. We predicted that some of the drugs now used in the treatment of diabetes may also help in the treatment and prevention of AD and other forms of memory loss. We are hopeful that drugs that improve glucose utilization in the brain could be used to treat memory loss in presymptomatic Alzheimer’s disease or perhaps treat age-related memory loss,” Dr. Chain stated in the press release.

There are an estimated 30 million people worldwide afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease, and experts expect this number to increase as the general population ages. Currently, there are no drugs to slow the progression of the disease. Dr. Chain further detailed how insulin sensitizers could play a role in further studies and developments for treatment.

“Glucose is used by cells in the brain to make the energy needed for the cells to live, but glucose utilization may be impaired in the brains of older people and those suffering from senile dementia or other forms of memory loss. There is growing evidence that defective brain glucose utilization results from resistance to the action of insulin. Insulin sensitizer drugs such as Rosiglitazone and Pioglitazone help brain cells properly use glucose. This approach has generated considerable interest in the pharmaceutical industry, as there is now compelling evidence from clinical trials supporting this theory,” Dr. Chain concluded.

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