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Ceregene Reports New Findings Regarding How Parkinson's Brains Respond to Neurotrophic Factors
Date:2/15/2011

ir damaged and dying dopamine-secreting neurons, keeping them alive and restoring normal function. Neurturin is a member of the same protein family as glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF).  The two molecules have similar pharmacological properties, and both have been shown to benefit the midbrain dopamine neurons that degenerate in Parkinson's disease.  Degeneration of these neurons is responsible for the major motor impairments of Parkinson's disease.  CERE-120 has been delivered by stereotactic injection to the terminal fields (i.e., the ends of the degenerating neurons), located in an area of the brain called the putamen.  The cell bodies for these same neurons are located in a different area of the brain, called the substantia nigra.  Once CERE-120 is delivered to the brain, it provides stable, long-lasting expression of neurturin in a highly targeted fashion.

About the Current CERE-120 (AAV2-NRTN) Clinical Trial

Ceregene has an ongoing Phase 1/2 clinical trial of CERE-120 (AAV-neurturin) in patients with Parkinson's disease.  Enrollment in the Phase 2b portion of this clinical trial is active at 11 centers across the US.  The goal of this clinical trial is to evaluate the safety and potential benefits of CERE-120 (AAV-neurturin) in the treatment of Parkinson's disease.

Approximately 52 people with Parkinson's disease will participate in this clinical trial.  Half of the study subjects will undergo brain surgery to receive CERE-120, while the other half will undergo a similar surgery without receiving any CERE-120 injections ("sham" or "mock" surgery).  Participants will be carefully monitored by an expert team of study doctors and nurses for three years after the study surgery.  Unless their medical condition prohibits it, all patients who initially receive the sham surgery in this trial will be offered CERE-120 when the trial is completed, assuming the data obtained
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SOURCE Ceregene, Inc.
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