September 15th, 2016, ROME – IRBM Science Park S.p.A. is among eight research institutions, both private and public, which have been awarded the 12.6 million euro grant, BRAVEinMS, issued by the Progressive MS Alliance.
Multiple sclerosis affects more than one million people worldwide, and is characterized by progressive degeneration of the myelin sheaths insulating motor neurons, with consequences such as loss of motor functions, sight defects, and various other neurological or cognitive deficits. There are no known cures.
The project aims to develop an in vitro platform for reprogramming stem cells in order to identify potential avenues of treating MS. IRBM Science Park is joined by the University of Milan, the National Health Institute (ISS), and the Italian National Research Council (CNR) in its work, and was awarded the grant alongside the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), the La Sapienza University in Rome, McGill University in Montreal, the Pierre et Marie Curie University in Paris, the University of Mainz, the University of Münster and the University of Düsseldorf.
About IRBM: IRBM Science Park S.p.A. is a privately owned company in Pomezia, Italy. Once part of Merck Research Laboratories, it reorganized in 2009 as an independent partner research organization, providing integrated drug discovery and preclinical development capabilities, and scientific know-how, to its pharmaceutical and foundation partners. It has been the recipient of several Italian and European research grants focused on neurodegeneration and anti-infectives. The company also provides a cGMP CMO facility for experimental lots of adenoviral vaccines, as well as a high-throughput screening hub. IRBM researchers have contributed to or developed 5 drugs currently on the market