Aleva Neurotherapeutics awarded Grant from The Michael J. Fox Foundation

16.09.2015 13:35

Aleva Neurotherapeutics, a leading company developing next-generation implants for deep brain stimulation (DBS) in major neurological indications such as Parkinson´s disease, today announced that it has been awarded a grant from The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (MJFF).

The grant of up to $180,000 is dedicated to development of Aleva’s directSTIM™ device, a complete directional DBS system for sustained therapy in Parkinson’s disease and essential tremor. The funds will go toward the preparation of a clinical study assessing the long-term clinical performance of directSTIM™ in a prospective, single-arm, open trial in people with Parkinson’s disease.

“We are delighted to receive a grant from The Michael J. Fox Foundation for our directional deep brain stimulation system,” said André Mercanzini, CTO and Founder of Aleva Neurotherapeutics. “The grant will provide pivotal support for the validation of our cutting-edge directional stimulation system and for obtaining market clearance for directSTIM™ in Europe.”

Currently available DBS systems continuously radiate stimulation, leading to side effects such as nausea and numbness. The Aleva system controls the direction of the electrical current in the brain, aiming for fewer side effects and less post-operative maintenance.

“A primary goal of our Foundation is improved treatments for the millions of people living with Parkinson’s disease,” said Adria Martig, PhD, Associate Director of Research Programs at MJFF. “We are enthusiastic about the Aleva deep brain stimulation system as it may provide an optimized therapeutic option for treating the debilitating motor symptoms of the disease.”

About Aleva Neurotherapeutics
Aleva Neurotherapeutics develops next-generation neurostimulation technologies and devices for Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) therapy. Its solutions are designed to be more precise and more efficient than currently available DBS approaches while causing fewer side effects. Based on its proprietary microDBS™ technology, Aleva has developed two novel brain stimulating products with different properties. The first, called directSTIM™, is a complete Directional Deep Brain Stimulation System for long-term therapy in Parkinson’s Disease and Essential Tremor; the second, called spiderSTIM™, is a full solution for intra-surgical placement of DBS electrodes.

The company is a spin-off from the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) Microsystems Laboratory of Prof. Philippe Renaud. Aleva Neurotherapeutics has raised EUR 22 million from renowned private and institutional investors, among them BioMedInvest AG, BB Biotech Ventures LP, Banexi Ventures Partners, Initiative Capital Romandie and selected private investors.

About The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research
As the world's largest non-profit funder of Parkinson's research, The Michael J. Fox Foundation is dedicated to accelerating a cure for Parkinson's disease and improved therapies for those living with the condition today. The Foundation pursues its goals through an aggressively funded, highly targeted research program coupled with active global engagement of scientists, Parkinson's patients, business leaders, clinical trial participants, donors and volunteers. In addition to funding more than $450 million in research to date, the Foundation has fundamentally altered the trajectory of progress toward a cure. Operating at the hub of worldwide Parkinson's research, the Foundation forges ground-breaking collaborations with industry leaders, academic scientists and government research funders; increases the flow of participants into Parkinson's disease clinical trials with its online tool, Fox Trial Finder; promotes Parkinson's awareness through high-profile advocacy, events and outreach; and coordinates the grassroots involvement of thousands of Team Fox members around the world.

About Deep Brain Stimulation
Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is approved worldwide for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease (PD), essential tremor, dystonia, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and epilepsy. It is also under investigation for the treatment of major depression. DBS is a therapy that relies on the delivery of mild electrical pulses to specific areas in the brain via an implanted lead connected to a battery-powered implantable pulse generator. At present, the leads used send the electrical current in all directions.

(Press Release)

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