BOSTON & SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Cognito Therapeutics announced today that the company has secured an exclusive worldwide license to the intellectual property developed from scientific discoveries by Li-Huei Tsai, Ph.D., and Ed Boyden, Ph.D., professors in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The company was launched earlier this year with Series A financing from Morningside Venture.
The scientific discoveries are featured in the December 8th issue of Nature. Working with mouse models of Alzheimer's disease, the team of scientists showed that by using a unique and totally non-invasive method of stimulation, they were able to restore gamma oscillation in the brains of the mice, which in turn activated the microglia cells to remove beta amyloid plaques in the brains. These plaques are characteristic of the brains of Alzheimer's disease patients, which are also deficient in gamma oscillation.
“These results have opened up new doors to our understanding of Alzheimer’s,” said Prof. Tsai, Picower Professor of Neuroscience at MIT and co-founder of Cognito Therapeutics. “By demonstrating the underlying importance of these brain wave signatures, we have potentially uncovered a key to solving this disease in humans.”
Tsai and Boyden co-founded Cognito Therapeutics to translate their findings into a treatment for Alzheimer’s patients. The company has filed an extensive portfolio of patents covering the applications of this novel approach to treating a variety of neurological disorders.
"This is truly breakthrough science," said Gerald Chan, ScD, founder of Morningside and board member of Cognito Therapeutics. "It has the potential of being a game changer in our struggle to find an effective treatment for Alzheimer's disease. The social impact of such a treatment, if successful, would be enormous, as dementia is becoming the leading medical problem of an aging population."
Cognito Therapeutics is based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and at the San Francisco incubator TheraNova, a medical device developer with expertise in accelerating time-to-market for innovative medical technologies.
“A device-based approach to Alzheimer’s is novel,” said Daniel Burnett, M.D., chief technology officer of Cognito Therapeutics and founder of TheraNova. “We are excited to be working with Morningside, which has shown an unwavering commitment to bringing this technology all the way into the clinic.”
For more information on the MIT research findings, please visit https://news.mit.edu/.
About Cognito Therapeutics
Cognito Therapeutics is an early-stage medical device company developing a device-based approach to treating Alzheimer’s disease. Using intellectual property exclusively licensed from MIT, the company is developing the use of induced brain wave oscillations to treat Alzheimer’s disease. For more information visit www.cognitotx.com.
Founded in Boston 30 years ago, Morningside is an active investor in venture-backed biotechnology start-ups. Licensing intellectual property from universities and research institutions, Morningside works with both academics and industry professionals to bring scientific discoveries into the clinic. The firm invests in novel therapeutic, diagnostics, and medical devices across many disease areas. For more information, visit www.morningside.com.
TheraNova is an experienced medical device developer with a track record of creating innovative and practical solutions to large markets with unmet needs. Dan Burnett, M.D. founded TheraNova with a “triple aim” to 1) improve outcomes for patients 2) expand access to healthcare and 3) to reduce costs for patients and payers. In its incubator, TheraNova pursues a rapid, highly capital-efficient process incorporating all the needed elements of medical device development in a shared services model. For more information, visit www.theranova.com.