Eli Lilly and Company and Medtronic, Inc. announce a collaboration to research and develop a new approach to treating Parkinson’s disease that involves delivering a potential new medicine to the brain using an implantable drug delivery system. The goal of the collaboration is to develop a therapeutic approach for Parkinson’s disease that combines the strengths of Lilly’s biologic, a modified form of glial cell derived neurotropic factor (GDNF), with Medtronic’s implantable drug infusion system technology.
“We believe we have biosynthetically engineered this GDNF variant to overcome technical hurdles of previous research in this area and are hopeful that early testing of our biologic with Medtronic’s device will provide the necessary data to safely advance into human studies,” said Michael L. Hutton, PhD, chief scientific officer of the neurodegeneration team at Lilly. “By collaborating with Medtronic from the earliest phase of research, we are maximizing the potential for this therapy’s efficient and effective development.”
Lilly has designed its GDNF variant with the intent to achieve increased distribution in targeted brain regions. Medtronic has developed a drug pump and specially designed catheter to enable precise delivery of the GDNF variant into a targeted area of the brain consistently over time. This combination of a novel GDNF variant, paired with an optimized delivery system, has the potential to impact the neurodegeneration that leads to worsening symptoms and progression of Parkinson’s disease.
Release Date: April 26, 2011
Source: Eli Lilly and Company