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New Consortium Paves the way for Improved Treatment of Hypertension and Associated Vascular Complications
Date:11/17/2009

LEIDEN, The Netherlands, November 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Top Institute Pharma (TI Pharma) has formed a consortium with Actelion Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Erasmus Medical Centre and Maastricht University to define new modalities for the treatment of hypertension (high blood pressure) and associated vascular complications such as heart and kidney failure, myocardial infarction and stroke. Based on novel action mechanisms, new drugs may be discovered with the potential to prevent vascular complications in patients with hypertension: an opportunity to improve the quality of life for over a billion people worldwide. This collaboration, involving 3.4 million euros, 9 new research positions, unique materials and exchange of know-how, is scheduled to last 3 years.

Jan Danser, Professor of Pharmacology at Erasmus MC says: "Ideally, new antihypertensive drugs not only lower blood pressure, but also offer organ protection. Our project studies the consequences of blocking the biological pathways in cells and organs that lead to hypertension. As such, the project will pave the way towards finding new ways to better treat hypertension and its associated vascular complications." Additionally, the project will focus on finding new modalities for the treatment of fibrosis and pulmonary hypertension, especially in children.

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a leading risk factor for coronary heart disease, renal insufficiency, pulmonary fibrosis and stroke. Hypertension often results in vascular complications and end-organ damage: major organs like the heart, kidneys, lung, brain and eyes, which are fed by the circulatory system, are affected by fluctuations in blood pressure. The number of people suffering from high blood pressure worldwide is increasing: 1 billion people are currently affected, but estimates predict that in 2025 the number will exceed 1.5 billion. Despite the high occurrence and sometimes great burden of the disease, available treatments are far from being sufficient. For children suffering from hypertension, an adequate treatment does not even exist.

The Netherlands Heart Foundation also supports this research. Hans Stam, director of the Netherlands Heart Foundation says: "Hypertension is a major risk factor for cardiovascular diseases such as myocardial infarction, heart failure and stroke. Unfortunately, antihypertensive medication fails to lower blood pressure sufficiently in numerous cases. For instance, research funded by the Netherlands Heart Foundation showed that 25% of the patients did not benefit from treatment with ACE inhibitors. An effective treatment of hypertension is of the utmost importance in our battle against cardiovascular diseases. The Netherlands Heart Foundation welcomes this new consortium and its efforts to explore new and more effective hypertension therapies."

SOURCE Top Institute Pharma (TI Pharma)


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SOURCE Top Institute Pharma (TI Pharma)
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