Summit study augurs well for Alzheimer's sufferers

Shares in AIM-listed drug development company Summit rose on Monday after the company unveiled encouraging results from a study investigating the impacts of a treatment on neurodegenerative diseases.

Shares in AIM-listed drug development company Summit rose on Monday after the company unveiled encouraging results from a study investigating the impacts of a treatment on neurodegenerative diseases.

The company reported that it had presented new data from its OGA (O-linked N-acetylglucosaminidase) inhibitor programme for the treatment of tauopathies - a group of neurodegenerative diseases that includes Alzheimer's disease - at the international conference on Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases held in Florence from March 6th-to-10th.

It said that OGA inhibitors were evaluated in an in vivo disease model, with results showing "trends to a positive impact on motor impairment symptoms" and improved survival rates following daily oral dosing.

Glyn Edwards, Chief Executive Officer of Summit, commented: "Following the strategic refocusing of Summit to commit all resources into advancing our two clinical-stage programmes, the completion of this study represents the natural conclusion of our involvement in this programme".

"The inhibition of the enzyme OGA has emerged as a potential new treatment paradigm for Alzheimer's disease and related tauopathies. These encouraging results further highlight the promise of the approach and of our OGA inhibitors, and will add greater depth to the scientific data package as we talk with perspective collaborators about taking this programme further into development," he added.

The study evaluated OGA inhibitors, previously identified using Seglin(TM) technology, in a transgenic tauopathy disease model to determine the effect that prolonged dosing had on motor impairments related to the disease and survival rates.

The company reported a clear trend for reduced clasping, a clinical sign indicative of motor impairment, and improved survival rates compared to the untreated cohort. A "statistically significant increase in O-GlcNAcylated protein levels in the brain" was also recorded.

Summit's share price was up 4.17% to 4.38p at 09:20 on Monday morning.

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