SOURCE: DiamiR

DiamiR

March 16, 2015 08:02 ET

DiamiR Announces $1.5M SBIR Phase II Funding for Further Evaluation of the microRNA Biomarkers for Early Detection of Alzheimer's Disease

MONMOUTH JUNCTION, NJ--(Marketwired - March 16, 2015) - DiamiR, LLC, a developer of innovative diagnostic tests for neurodegenerative and other diseases, announced today that the National Institute on Aging (NIA) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded DiamiR a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to support further validation and development of the company's targeted diagnostic technology based on the analysis of brain-enriched microRNA biomarkers in plasma for early detection of Alzheimer's disease and Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI). The award will provide DiamiR with approximately $1.5M over two years. In the previous studies performed by the company, and supported in part by SBIR Phase I grant ($225,000), MCI was differentiated from healthy controls with up to 96% accuracy. The present award will support the analysis of archived and prospectively collected plasma samples; the analysis will be conducted in collaboration with leading academic centers.

"There is a great clinical need to develop minimally invasive and effective methods to identify individuals at higher risk of developing cognitive impairment and dementia at asymptomatic or early stages. Early disease detection could facilitate more efficient enrollment into clinical trials and subsequently enable effective treatment," said Samuil Umansky, MD, PhD, President and Chief Scientific Officer of DiamiR and Principal Investigator on the grant. "We greatly appreciate the additional support of the NIH. This funding strengthens our ability to collaborate with key opinion leaders in the field of neurodegenerative diseases, to conduct larger studies, and to advance the development of our first test, CogniMIR™, for early detection of MCI with the initial application in clinical trials support."

About microRNAs as biomarkers of brain health

microRNAs are a class of small non-coding regulatory RNA molecules, which modulate target gene expression and protein production, and whose levels often change in disease. Many microRNAs are enriched in certain organs (e.g. brain), tissues or organ regions (e.g. hippocampus, midbrain), cells (e.g. neurons), and cellular compartments (e.g. synapses and neurites). microRNAs can cross the blood-brain barrier and be detected in the bloodstream. These properties of brain-enriched miRNAs make them powerful and patient friendly biomarkers of brain health.

About DiamiR

DiamiR is a privately held molecular diagnostics company focused on developing minimally invasive tests for early detection and monitoring of Mild Cognitive Impairment, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and other conditions. The proprietary technology is based on quantitative analysis of organ-enriched microRNA signatures in plasma and can be used for screening, patient stratification as well as disease and treatment monitoring. For more information, please visit the company's website at www.diamirbio.com.

Please Note: This news release contains forward-looking statements regarding future events. These statements are just predictions and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause the actual events or results to differ materially. These risks and uncertainties include, among others: the results, timing, costs and regulatory review of our studies and clinical trials; the results of studies of our product candidates conducted by others; our ability to obtain future funding on acceptable terms; our ability to obtain regulatory approval of our product candidates; the possible impairment of, or inability to obtain, intellectual property rights; and innovation by our competitors. The content is solely the responsibility of the company and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.

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