SOURCE: NeuroInvestment

June 05, 2007 12:30 ET

Memory Therapeutics Reviewed by NeuroInvestment

CARDIFF, CA--(Marketwire - June 5, 2007) - NI Research has released the June issue of NeuroInvestment, which reviews the status and prospects of treatments for memory disorders such as MCI (Mild Cognitive Impairment) and AAMI (Age-Associated Memory Impairment). While much attention is paid to the burgeoning prevalence of Alzheimer's, there is an enormous, albeit much more hidden, epidemic of less severe forms of memory disturbance, a large proportion (though not all) of which is a precursor to dementia. Besides the subjective distress experienced by people who find everyday information increasingly slipping through their fingers, slowing the progression of MCI/AAMI might also delay the onset of dementia -- impacting the major societal healthcare issue for decades to come.

The June issue reviews theories of memory and memory enhancement and assesses programs that are or could be turned to MCI/AAMI. Mechanisms of action being pursued include nicotinic receptor modulation -- Targacept (NASDAQ: TRGT); Memory Pharmaceuticals; EnVivo Pharmaceuticals, Abbott Laboratories; CoMentis, amongst others; AMPA receptor modulation -- Cortex (AMEX: COR); Eli Lilly; GlaxoSmithKline, amongst several -- and PDE4 modulation -- e.g. Memory Pharmaceuticals, Helicon Therapeutics. Other mechanisms are being pursued by Pfizer, Avera, Cephalon, and Accera.

But the barriers to memory therapeutics are not limited to the search for cognitive enhancers which are safe enough to give to an often otherwise healthy patient population. The other overriding concern is regulatory: While the FDA has paid lip-service to the concept of MCI being a discrete disorder that can be addressed directly, the reality is that they consider MCI too vaguely defined, and a memory enhancer too likely to be used off-label as a 'lifestyle drug.' Companies have thus had to choose between proving the mettle of their memory drugs in Alzheimer's, a very expensive and difficult process, or in what has become the more popular choice of late, schizophreniform cognition.

NeuroInvestment's June issue also includes commentary on the positive results for milnacipran announced by Forest and Cypress Biosciences (NASDAQ: CYPB); the flurry of hyperbole around Alzheimer's programs from Elan and Medivation; and a review of the private company CeNeRx Biopharma.

About NeuroInvestment: NeuroInvestment is the independent, monthly review of the neurotherapeutics area. A one-year corporate subscription is $1500, email or hardcopy. Add $250 for dual delivery, add $40 for airmail delivery outside North America. A three-month trial subscription is US$450.

NI Research is the leading publisher of independent research on the neuropharmaceutical/therapeutic industry. NI Research has published NeuroInvestment since 1995 (http://www.neuroinvestment.com); the Private CNS Company Review since 2003; and has now released an annual compendium of all neuro-oriented R&D programs organized by disorder, CNS 2007: Disorders/Therapeutics (http://www.niresearch.com/CNS%202007%20order%20form.pdf). NI Research also provides inlicensing consultation and custom research for large and small pharmaceutical firms. NI Research has developed an unmatched information base regarding both publicly and privately held neuro-oriented companies.

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