Pharmacological Advancements in Neuroscience Drug Discovery & Pre-Clinical Studies for Fragile X Syndrome to Identify Drug Candidates for Autism Therapies Lead Biotech Sector Research

CORAL SPRINGS, Florida, April 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --

In the search for neuroscience drug discovery treatments, Alzheimer's disease and specifically autism drug candidates, a few viable therapeutic approaches have come from research on neurological conditions such as fragile X syndrome.   Biotech Companies in focus today are Neurotrope, Inc. (OTC: NTRP), CytRx Corporation (NASDAQ: CYTR), Trovagene, Inc., (NASDAQ: TROV), Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARNA), Abbot Laboratories (NYSE: ABT) & Lexicon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: LXRX).

Neurotrope, Inc. (OTCQB: NTRP) today announced that Neurotrope BioScience, Inc., its wholly-owned operating subsidiary, has received a grant from the FRAXA Research Foundation, Inc. ("FRAXA") to fund a pre-clinical Fragile X Syndrome ("FXS") behavior study for its lead proprietary drug candidate, bryostatin, at FRAXA's purpose built laboratory located at the University of Chile in Santiago, Chile. FRAXA was founded in 1994 by three parents of children with FXS to support scientific research aimed at finding a treatment and a cure for this disease. FXS is the most common cause of inherited intellectual disability and the most common known genetic cause of autism or autism spectrum disorders.  FRAXA funds grants and fellowships at universities all over the world and has funded more than $24 million in scientific research.

Read the full NTRP Press Release at http://www.financialnewsmedia.com/profiles/ntrp.html

Under the terms of the grant, FRAXA will provide full funding for a preclinical study to evaluate the behavioral effects of bryostatin-1 in a FXS mouse model. Bryostatin is a potent activator of Protein Kinase C (PKC), which Neurotrope believes is a viable therapeutic approach for the treatment of FXS. Preclinical research at the Blanchette Rockefeller Neurosciences Institute (BRNI), which formed the basis for Neurotrope receiving Orphan Drug Designation for bryostatin, has suggested that treatment with bryostatin can mature synapses and increase the number of synaptic connections resulting in improved learning and memory.  Neurotrope is developing bryostatin under a licensing agreement with BRNI. The Company was recently granted orphan drug designation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for bryostatin in the treatment of FXS...

About Fragile X Syndrome - FXS is the most common cause of inherited intellectual disability and the most common known genetic cause of autism or autism spectrum disorders. There is currently no FDA approved treatment for FXS available on the market today.  Symptoms of FXS include moderate to severe learning disabilities, behavioral disorders, seizures and cognitive impairment.  FXS is caused by a partial or a full mutation of the FMR1 gene.

In other Biotech News & Happenings in the sector: Shares of CytRx Corporation (NASDAQ: CYTR) rose 12% to $5.04 in late afternoon trading Friday after Oppenheimer initiated coverage on the biopharmaceutical research and development oncology company with an "outperform" rating and a $10 price target.  The company published encouraging Phase II interim results in January for its cancer-fighting drug aldoxorubicin. CytRx has submitted related data for a potential presentation in May at an industry conference in Chicago.  Full story at http://www.thestreet.com/story/13117015/1/cytrx-cytr-stock-rises-today-following-oppenheimer-coverage-initiation.html?puc=yahoo&cm_ven=YAHOO

Trovagene, Inc., (NASDAQ: TROV) a developer of cell-free molecular diagnostics, announced Friday that clinical data presented at the 2015 European Lung Cancer Conference (ELCC) demonstrate that its urine-based Precision Cancer Monitoring℠ (PCM) platform outperformed tissue biopsy for the detection and monitoring of EGFR T790M mutations in metastatic lung cancer patients. The abstract, titled Detection of EGFR T790M Mutation in Urinary Circulating Tumor DNA from Metastatic Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Patients, was presented today by Hatim Husain, M.D., University of California, San Diego Moores Cancer Center during the ESMO-IASLC Best Abstracts session in Geneva, Switzerland.

Eisai Inc. and Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARNA) recently announced the completion of two Phase 1 registrational clinical trials that Eisai and Arena believe demonstrate bioequivalence of an investigational once-daily extended release formulation of lorcaserin, as compared to the twice-daily immediate release formulation approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and marketed as BELVIQ®. If approved, the extended release formulation is expected to be marketed as BELVIQ XR, which is the brand name conditionally approved by the FDA.

Abbott Laboratories (NYSE: ABT) announced recently the company had received U.S. FDA clearance for freestyle precision NEO Blood Glucose Monitoring System which would be available over the counter at major U.S. retailers.    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/blood-glucose-meter-provides-people-130000945.html

Lexicon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: LXRX), a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing breakthrough treatments for human disease, announced that the company and Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE: BMY) have selected a development candidate for neuropathic pain as part of their neuroscience drug discovery and development alliance.  Lexicon and Bristol-Myers Squibb are proceeding with plans to progress the development candidate through IND-enabling studies in preparation for the commencement of clinical trials.  Bristol-Myers Squibb has the first option under the alliance to obtain exclusive clinical development and commercialization rights upon the initiation of Phase 1 clinical studies, subject to the payment of milestones and royalties to Lexicon.

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