More MS news articles for Aug 2001

Spotting Genes From the Human Central Nervous System on the Flow-thru Chip(TM) Will Create a Cutting-Edge Technology

Neuralstem, Inc. and MetriGenix, Inc. Announce Planned Joint Development And Marketing Program for Neurochips Using Flow-thru Chip(TM) Technology

August 7, 2001  8:02am
Source: PR Newswire

COLLEGE PARK, and GAITHERSBURG, Md., Aug 7, 2001 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Neuralstem, Inc., the leader in human central nervous system (CNS) stem cell technology, and MetriGenix, Inc., a newly formed biotechnology company, today announced plans to jointly develop and market a series of neurochips as low-density, theme-based oligonucleotide microarrays based on MetriGenix's Flow-thru Chip(TM) technology. Neuralstem will contribute content from its discovery efforts using its proprietary human CNS stem cells. MetriGenix will provide the relevant intellectual property and know-how associated with the Flow-thru Chip(TM) technology. The resulting stem cell-based neurochips will be offered to the CNS drug discovery and development community for research and screening purposes. Financial terms of the joint development program were not disclosed.

Neuralstem's human, highly characterized CNS stem cells have undergone expression analysis throughout all stages of development, through disease model assays, and under CNS drug influences. This genomic information is designed to assist pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in identifying drug candidates with potentially less toxicity and more direct activity on CNS targets. This combination of microarray technology and human CNS gene information is ideal for screening compounds for their bioactivity and toxicity. Neuralstem's human CNS stem cell lines will be made available to Flow-thru Chip(TM) customers for proprietary discovery efforts and follow-up screening and validation.

MetriGenix's Flow-thru Chip(TM) technology is a biomolecular analysis platform with performance advantages over traditional substrates for biological sensing applications in which molecular interactions occur within three-dimensional microchannels rather than on the two-dimensional flat-surface platforms currently available. The Chip comprises microchannels that connect the upper and lower faces of the chip in such a manner that fluid can flow through the chip. Biomolecular capture probes are deposited into one or more discrete microchannels of the chip to create a microarray that is used to carry out multiple determinations in parallel. The microscopic diameter of each microchannel results in a much larger surface area-to-volume ratio than is attainable with flat-surface platforms. Specific advantages may include: improved responsiveness and dynamic range; reduced assay times; more uniform probe disposition and higher array densities; and smaller sample and reagent volume requirements.

"Smaller, less expensive, focused-content microarrays are clearly going to play an important role in drug discovery," said Neuralstem President and CEO Richard Garr. "MetriGenix's unique platform will enable companies to move to high-throughput genomic target screening. Our jointly developed products will allow companies to screen against genomic targets identified from experiments on our human CNS stem cell-derived neurons."

Dr. Andrew O'Beirne, Dr.P.H., MetriGenix's President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, "We are very excited to announce this collaboration with Neuralstem to bring together the patented Flow-thru Chip(TM) platform with Neuralstem's proprietary, patented, human neural cell system technology. This combination will provide a unique gene expression platform for the evaluation of drug interactions and for the study of CNS diseases. We believe that this partnership has the potential to provide a product offering that is not only unique, but which also can be of significant benefit to the study and treatment of neurological disease."

Neuralstem Overview

Neuralstem, Inc. is a privately held biopharmaceutical company commercializing proprietary, patented central nervous system (CNS) stem cell technology and human neurons derived from its CNS stem cells. The technology itself represents a powerful new therapeutic approach and also provides a suite of research tools for accelerating drug discovery and development. Neuralstem is developing a new generation of biotherapeutic products to treat and cure neurodegenerative and neurological disorders of the brain and spinal cord, including Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, stroke, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury, and epilepsy.

MetriGenix Overview

MetriGenix, Inc. is a recently established biotechnology company, spun out from Gene Logic Inc. in July of 2001, focused on commercialization of its patented microarray technology, the Flow-thru Chip(TM) technology. The Flow-thru Chip(TM) technology is a three-dimensional biomolecular analysis platform that may provide performance advantages over traditional platforms. MetriGenix intends to market custom and branded chips and associated instrumentation for biomolecular analyses. The Flow-thru Chip(TM) platform is being developed for biological discovery programs, pharmaceutical screening, genetic diagnostics, and individualized disease management. For additional information about MetriGenix and the Flow-thru Chip(TM), please visit the Company Web site at HTTP://WWW.METRIGENIX.COM or call 301/987-1716.


    For Neuralstem, Inc.:

    I. Richard Garr
    President and CEO

    Mary Moynihan
    M2Friend Communications

    For MetriGenix, Inc.:

    Andrew O'Beirne, Dr.P.H.
    President & Chief Executive Officer

SOURCE Neuralstem, Inc.

CONTACT:    I. Richard Garr, President and CEO of Neuralstem,
                  +1-301-405-5186, or; or Mary Moynihan of M2Friend
                  Communications, +1-301-209-7100, or, for Neuralstem; or
                  Andrew O'Beirne, Dr. P.H., President & Chief Executive Officer of MetriGenix,
                  +1-301-987-1716, or


Copyright (C) 2001 PR Newswire