Tech Transfer eNews Blog

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals and Vanderbilt collaborate to advance CNS disorder treatments


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: June 24th, 2020

San Diego-based ACADIA Pharmaceuticals and the Warren Center for Neuroscience Drug Discovery at Vanderbilt University have entered into a licensing agreement to accelerate treatments for central nervous system (CNS) disorders such as Alzheimer’s and schizophrenia.

The collaboration is aimed at developing treatments based on positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) of the M1 receptor. VU319, a lead compound discovered by Vanderbilt researchers at the Warren Center, could help slow memory loss associated with serious brain disorders and is currently in Phase I clinical trials. The agreement also includes compounds in preclinical development, as well as those in early-stage.

Under the terms of the agreement, Vanderbilt received an upfront payment and is eligible for potential milestone payments and tiered royalties.

“The combination of ACADIA’s proven development and commercialization capabilities in neuropsychiatric disorders and the Warren Center’s discovery expertise may lead to differentiated treatments addressing cognitive deficits and other neuropsychiatric symptoms that represent some of the largest unmet needs in central nervous system disorders today,” says Jeffrey Conn, researcher at the Warren Center.

“The ACADIA collaboration is another example of the need for focused academic drug discovery to de-risk novel mechanisms and advance beyond tool compounds to clinical candidates,” says Craig Lindsley, co-director of the Warren Center. “This collaboration marks an important step in the clinical development of these promising compounds and represents the work of many talented scientists over the last decade.”

Source: Research News @Vanderbilt

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