April 29, 2020
Atuka Inc. and Ulysses Neuroscience Ltd., an Irish-based R&D organization, have entered a strategic partnership to co-market and combine expertise in biomarkers analysis and animal models to advance translational medicine in Parkinson’s Disease.
Atuka provides contract research and consultancy services for the biopharmaceutical industry with world-leading expertise in Parkinson’s disease and related neurological conditions. We provide cutting-edge, rodent and non-human primate models (both toxin and molecular pathology-driven) to evaluate efficacy and target engagement over a comprehensive range of symptomatic, both motor (e.g. parkinsonism and dyskinesia) and non-motor (e.g. cognition and impulse control) and disease-modification assays. Atuka also offers non-GLP toxicity, biodistribution, medicinal chemistry, DMPK and in-vivo imaging services to aid development of novel therapeutics and diagnostics.
Ulysses Neuroscience has research platforms dedicated to: i) preclinical analysis of cognitive/behavioural alterations and neurophysiological recording in rodents, with a capacity in zebrafish under development; ii) preclinical/clinical biomarker analysis (synaptic plasticity and cytoskeletal dynamics) of proteins and nucleic acids in biological fluids and post-mortem tissues; iii) clinical trials for cognitive and behavioural assessments and sampling of biological fluids.
Dr. James Koprich, CSO of Atuka added, “Focusing on translatable biomarkers of both disease progression and target engagement will prove powerful in defining meaningful endpoints for preclinical and clinical trial designs. Together with Ulysses Neuroscience, we can work to validate the animal models in this important space and use these platforms in efficacy testing paradigms.”
Dr. Michael Hill, CEO of Atuka concluded, “We look forward to working with Ulysses Neuroscience and are confident our complimentary capabilities will enhance the studies we offer to our clients. In particular, combining Atuka’s expertise in animal models of Parkinson’s disease and Ulysses Neuroscience’s capabilities in assessment of translationally relevant biomarkers, is an exciting prospect.”
Dr. Massimiliano (Max) Bianchi, President & CEO of Ulysses Neuroscience said, “We are enthusiastic about working together with Atuka, a world leader CRO providing the most advanced and translational animal models of Parkinson’s Disease applied to both rodents and non-human primates. Ulysses Neuroscience will integrate analysis of central and peripheral (i.e. fluids) translational relevant biomarkers in these models for which the pharmaceutical industry has an urgent need in order to advance their drug discovery projects into the clinic”
Dr. Charlotte Callaghan, CSO & Patient Insight Manager of Ulysses Neuroscience continues, “Synaptic pathology is a key feature of neurodegenerative disease, including Parkinson’s Disease. Identification and analysis of markers of synaptic plasticity in peripheral fluids (blood plasma and CSF) in animal models of disease which are confirmed in the patient population has high translational value. Further, modification of these biomarkers by tool compounds in animal models will rapidly advance the drug discovery pipeline in industry and ultimately into the clinic”