Daily Business Report-Sept. 4, 2015
Migraine is the world’s most common neurological disorder.
Scripps Scientists Win Grant to Complete
Clinical Trials on New Migraine Treatment
Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute have received a grant of nearly $4.5 million to complete preclinical studies on a new anti-migraine drug candidate.
The grant, which could increase to up to $10 million, is from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke of the National Institutes of Health.
“Migraine is the world’s most common neurological disorder, and the No. 1 trigger for migraine is stress,” said TSRI Professor Ed Roberts, who will direct the project with TSRI Professor Hugh Rosen, a long-time colleague and collaborator.
“It is spectacular that NIH has chosen to support this team of drug discoverers,” said Dale Boger, chair of the Department of Chemistry and Richard and Alice Cramer Professor of Chemistry at TSRI, “and on such an important problem.”
This new research program has its roots in primary “hit” molecules identified at the TSRI Molecular Screening Center at Scripps Florida, while supported by the NIH Molecular Libraries Program. This “hit” underwent a rigorous optimization process in the Scripps California laboratories of Roberts and Rosen. Intriguingly, the new drug candidate acts on protein targets that are intimately involved with the body’s stress mechanisms. This activity led the researchers to consider it as a treatment for stress-induced migraine.
Work done at TSRI and with collaborators at the University of Arizona have shown already that the compound is fully active when given orally, and Roberts said it may be possible to turn it into a once-a-day pill that actually prevents migraine onset — instead of just treating symptoms.
Roberts and Rosen have a history of bringing drug candidates all the way to clinical trials. In another project, they worked together to identify and develop a drug candidate, now called ozanimod, currently in Phase III clinical trials with Receptos Inc. as a treatment for multiple sclerosis and ulcerative colitis. Receptos was recently acquired by the company Celgene for $7.23 billion.
Toni Atkins Selects New Assembly Speaker
Times of San Diego
Assembly Democrats have picked Assemblyman Anthony Rendon of Lakewood as the 70th speaker of the Assembly, Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins of San Diego announced Thursday.
The leadership change will occur after a floor vote in January and a transition period to be determined by the speaker and the speaker-elect, her office said.
Term limits require Atkins to give up her Assembly seat in 2016. A former member of the San Diego City Council, Atkins was elected speaker in March 2014 and assumed the position two months later.
Rendon, 47, first elected in 2012, is eligible to serve until 2024 under new term limits rules.
“With the crush of business facing us in the coming final week of the legislative session, I decided it’s time to end all the suspense and speculation so we can focus our undivided attention on the critical issues before us,” Atkins said. “The caucus has made an excellent choice, and I’m delighted to see everyone uniting behind Assemblymember Rendon. I know he will find the job as rewarding and challenging as I do.”
Rendon’s 63rd Assembly District includes the cities and communities of Bell, Cudahy, Hawaiian Gardens, Lakewood, North Long Beach, Lynwood, Maywood, Paramount and South Gate.
Mind Solutions Shipping
Wearable Brain-Computer Interface
Times of San Diego
San Diego-based Mind Solutions announced Friday it has begun shipping its NeuroSync brain-computer-interface, a $129 unit worn like a Bluetooth headset.
The startup company said the product is the smallest device of its kind and predicted it would be a top-selling wearable electronic product in the upcoming holiday season.
Users can control actions on smart phones and computers through the power of thought. A sensor on the device receives electrical signals produced by the brain through the inner ear canal.
The NeuroSync can be purchased online through Amazon.com as well as the company’s own website at TheNeuroSync.com.
BNBuilders Hires Project Manager
BNBuilders has recruited Melanie Ziemniak as a project manager.
Ziemniak is taking on one of the company’s highest profile projects in San Diego, the new 60,000 square foot lab/office building for Alexandria Real Estate Equities Inc.
Ziemniak has over 25 years of experience managing complex projects costing up to $75 million, including new construction, renovations, tenant improvements and campus additions. Her past work includes more than a dozen projects throughout San Diego for clients such as Sharp Healthcare, Palomar Pomerado Health, Skyline Hills Branch Library, and UCSD.
Ziemniak earned her B.A. in communication from Arizona State University and her M.S. in executive leadership from the University of San Diego.