Sensorion Enters Into Exclusive Negotiations with Pasteur Institute for Hearing Loss Gene Therapy Programs
MONTPELLIER, France, Nov. 23, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Sensorion (FR0012596468 – ALSEN / PEA-PME eligible) announced today that it has entered into a letter of intent with Pasteur Institute (Paris, France) to exclusively negotiate a framework agreement to obtain the exclusive licenses to develop and commercialize gene therapy product candidates for restoration, treatment and prevention of hearing loss disorders.
The Pasteur Institute Unit of Genetics and Physiology of Hearing, headed by Professor Christine Petit, has developed world-class expertise over the last 25 years in hearing development, molecular physiology and physiopathology leading to gene therapy programs for inner ear disorders. Sensorion and Pasteur Institute will collaborate on several lead programs to correct monogenic forms of hereditary hearing loss including, among others, the Usher Syndrome type1 and otoferlin-deficiency.
These gene therapy programs have the potential to substantially improve the quality of life for many patients, from newborn babies to ageing population representing important commercial opportunities impacting hundreds of thousands of patients. Hearing loss remains an area of significant unmet medical need reinforced by one of the latest reports from the World Health Organization raising the issue of hearing loss as a major public health priority as the number of people at risk of becoming deaf keep on increasing year over year.
“This collaboration between Pasteur Institute and Sensorion aims to advance science from bench to bedside. We strive to change the standard of care for patients and Sensorion is our partner of choice for this major step forward,” said Professor Christine Petit. Professor Christine Petit, MD, PhD who chairs Sensorion’s scientific advisory board, is an internationally renowned geneticist and neurobiologist with decades of hearing research leadership. She has been the recipient of numerous prestigious awards including the Lifetime achievement Award from the Association for Research in Otolaryngology (February 2018) and the Kavli Prize in Neuroscience (June 2018) awarded by the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters for her pioneering work on the molecular and neural mechanisms of hearing.
“We are very excited to cooperate with the highly accomplished scientific leaders of Pasteur Institute. This partnership would enable us to expand our hearing loss franchise with novel gene therapy candidates allowing us to provide further relevant medical options to restore, treat and prevent debilitating diseases in the inner ear space,” said Nawal Ouzren, Chief Executive Officer.
Sensorion is a pioneering clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, which specializes in the development of novel therapies to restore, treat and prevent inner ear diseases such as hearing loss, vertigo and tinnitus. Our clinical-stage portfolio includes two phase 2 products: Seliforant (SENS-111) under investigation for acute unilateral vestibulopathy and Arazasetron (SENS-401) for sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL). We have built a unique R&D technology platform to expand our understanding of the physiopathology and etiology of inner ear related diseases enabling us to select the best targets and modalities for drug candidates. We also identify biomarkers to improve diagnosis and treatment of these underserved illnesses.
We are uniquely placed through our platforms and pipeline of potential therapeutics to make a lasting positive impact on hundreds of thousands of people with inner ear related disorders; a significant global unmet need in medicine today.
About the Institut Pasteur and the Institut Pasteur International Network
The Institut Pasteur, a private foundation with officially recognized charitable status set up by Louis Pasteur in 1887 and inaugurated on November 14th, 1888, has been, for the past 130 years, an internationally renowned center for biomedical research with a network of 32 institutes worldwide. In the pursuit of its mission to prevent and fight against diseases in France and throughout the world, the Institut Pasteur operates in four main areas: scientific and medical research, public health and health monitoring, teaching, and business development and technology transfer.
More than 2,500 people work on its Paris campus. The Institut Pasteur is a globally recognized leader in infectious diseases, microbiology, and immunology. Its 130 units also focus their research on certain cancers, genetic and neurodegenerative diseases, genomics and developmental biology. This research aims to expand our knowledge of living organisms in a bid to lay the foundation for new prevention strategies and novel therapeutics. Since its inception, 10 Institut Pasteur scientists have been awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine, including two in 2008 for the 1983 discovery of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes AIDS.
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