Market Overview

CurePSP Supports Four New Studies Through Its Venture Grants Program


Research will study genetic factors and tau-protein pathologies in
progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP)

CurePSP, the foundation for prime of life neurodegeneration, has funded
four grants at a total of more than $300,000 to investigators at
universities in the U.S. and Germany for innovative studies in
progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP).

PSP is an incurable disease that is part of a spectrum of "prime of
life" neurodegenerative afflictions, so named because they most often
onset during middle age. These diseases progress rapidly with serious
movement, behavioral, emotional, and cognitive symptoms that are largely

The studies will investigate genetic factors involved in PSP as well as
the behavior of the tau protein, which aggregates into tangles and
destroys brain tissue. The tau protein is also involved in Alzheimer's
disease and other neurodegenerative conditions.

The study by Dr. Edward A. Burton of the University of Pittsburgh will
identify gene variants that increase or reduce the risk of developing
PSP and seek to uncover the biochemical mechanisms involved in the

Dr. Todd Cohen of the University of North Carolina will investigate
tau-protein acetylation as a potential trigger for PSP. Acetylation
involves protein modifications within a cell. The goal will be to devise
therapies to forestall the abnormal clumping of tau proteins, which
could prevent the onset or progression of PSP.

Dr. Thomas Koeglsperger of Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich, will
study the effect of the gene STX6 on the uptake of tau protein in
cultured human neurons. The research will provide further insight into
the cause of PSP and support the investigation of new drugs to halt the
progression of the disease.

The investigation of Dr. Xiaobo Mao of the Johns Hopkins University
School of Medicine will explore a specific mechanism of pathological tau
spreading using mouse and cellular models. This may provide a target for
drug development.

"We are excited about being able to fund these studies, which were
chosen from the largest pool of Venture Grant applications we have had,"
said Dr. Alex Klein, Vice President – Scientific Affairs for the
foundation. "They are approaching research into neurodegeneration from a
variety of angles with innovative methods and we expect results that
will advance our knowledge of PSP and related diseases."

CurePSP's Venture Grants program provides seed capital for early career
investigators for targeted research studies. Applications are reviewed
by CurePSP's global Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) and recommended for
funding to the foundation's board of directors.

About CurePSP

CurePSP is the foundation for prime of life neurodegeneration, a
spectrum of fatal brain disorders that often strike during a person's
most productive and rewarding years. Currently, there is no effective
treatment or cure for these diseases, which afflict about 150,000 people
in the U.S. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), these
diseases account for half of all neurodegeneration before the age of 65.
Since its founding in 1990, CurePSP has funded more than 190 research
studies and is the leading source of support and advocacy for patients,
their families, and other caregivers. CurePSP also provides education
and awareness to doctors and allied healthcare professionals and the
general public. CurePSP is based in New York City. Please visit
for more information.

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