AC Immune finds new antibodies targeting neurodegenerative diseases

Swiss clinical stage biopharmaceutical company AC Immune has discovered new antibodies against two targets, Alpha-synuclein and TDP-43, in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases.

While Alpha-synuclein is a long-established target for Parkinson's disease and other Lewy body diseases, TDP-43 is a newly identified target that is important for neuro-orphan indications such as Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration (FTLD-TDP).

In addition, both targets play a major role in other significant neurodegenerative indications such as Alzheimer's disease, beyond the established hallmarks of amyloid beta-peptide (Abeta) and Tau.

AC Immune chief executive officer Andrea Pfeifer said: “We are very pleased to move these next-generation antibodies into our discovery pipeline.

“They have significant potential for addressing the underlying pathology of a range of unmet indications, and reinforce our belief that precision medicine is critical to delivering effective treatments in Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegenerative diseases.

"We are executing a clear strategy around three pillars: Alzheimer's disease, other significant neurodegenerative diseases and neuro-orphan indications, and diagnostics."

“We are executing a clear strategy around three pillars: Alzheimer's disease, other significant neurodegenerative diseases and neuro-orphan indications, and diagnostics.”

The company used its latest SupraAntigen platform to discover the new antibodies.

AC Immune chief scientific officer Dr Andreas Muhs said: “Many neurodegenerative diseases share their mode-of-action and targets, which provides opportunities for synergistic development of product candidates.

“Our common scientific approach to proteinopathies, complemented with proprietary diagnostics, consistently and rapidly delivers new high-quality treatments for precision medicine in neurodegenerative diseases.

“These two latest antibody programmes have unique binding properties to only the pathological forms of alpha-synuclein and TDP-43, and we are encouraged by the observations of expert groups on their potential attributes as novel therapeutics.”