ReNetX Bio has been launched as a new company aiming to develop the neuro-restorative Nogo Receptor platform technology developed at Yale University, New Haven, USA, by Stephen Strittmatter.
Strittmatter is scientific advisor to and co-founder of the new company.
The new company launches with the appointment of Erika Smith as chief executive officer. The company also announced the initiation of a Series A financing round to fund its first clinical trial of its lead therapeutic candidate, Nogo Trap, in patients with chronic spinal cord injury.
Nogo Trap is a decoy receptor designed to binds the growth inhibitors allowing the body to grow nerve fibres naturally and directly targeting restoration across all facets of growth: axonal regeneration (long distance), axonal sprouting (medium distance) and synaptic plasticity.
“Spinal cord injury has been a condition so far resistant to treatment by a variety of therapeutic approaches,” says Strittmatter. “However, based on the research in my laboratory, we believe that we may have an approach that could benefit these patients. Nogo Trap has demonstrated improved neurologic function following central nervous system damage in several animal models. Based on these promising results, we now believe that Nogo Trap should be evaluated in chronic spinal cord injury patients.”
ReNetX Bio, formerly known as Axerion Therapeutics, currently receives development support for the Nogo Trap chronic spinal cord injury programme from the US National Institutes of Health and the US National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences.
ReNetX Bio appointed Smith as part of the recapitalization of the company. She has over 25 years of experience as an investor and entrepreneur in life sciences. Most recently, she was director of the Blavatnik Fund for Innovation at Yale University.
“Spinal cord injury is one of the most significant unmet medical needs with an annual cost of more than US$5 billion per year,” says Smith. “A treatment that could mitigate even only a part of the condition could both improve quality of life of these patients. When the funding is in place, we anticipate swift patient recruitment for our chronic spinal cord injury clinical trial. In the long-term, conditions beyond spinal cord injury including glaucoma and stroke.”