Nervous system diseases pose the greatest challenge faced by modern medicine and the healthcare system. The challenge lies, on the one hand, in the complexity of the human brain and the mechanisms which control it, and on the other hand, in treatment and social costs of nervous system diseases, which in the European Union significantly exceed the total expenditure on combating cancers, cardiovascular diseases or diabetes. Total annual medical and social costs of nervous system diseases in Europe are estimated at 798 billion euros.

The latest population projections indicate that the costs of treating nervous system diseases will increase. We must take into account the fact that societies in high- and medium-developed countries are ageing progressive (and that there is essentially no possibility to recover nerve cells in the course of human life), the stressful pace and complexity of professional and personal life of modern societies. Introducing effective therapies is among the essential elements which make it possible to mitigate the negative short-term and long-term effects of central nervous system disorders.

Celon Pharma S.A. is searching for modern and innovative solutions, trying to meet the needs of patients suffering from various kinds of nervous system disorders, including schizophrenia, dementia, Huntington's disease, depression.

Phosphodiesterase 10A inhibitors

Phosphodiesterase 10A (PDE10A) is an enzyme hydrolyzing cGMP and cAMP cyclic nucleotides which are universal cell transmitters. PDE10A is highly and specifically expressed in the striatal medium spiny neurons, making this protein an attractive target for pharmacological intervention for diseases caused by dysfunction of this part of the brain. Development of a PDE10A inhibitor can be particularly significant for patients suffering from schizophrenia and other psychoses, as well as Huntington's disease, thus offering them a chance to benefit from effective treatment without the adverse effects of metabolic therapy.

5-HT6 receptor antagonists

5-HT6 receptors are located in the central nervous system and constitute an important part of the serotonin receptors. Inhibition of 5-HT6 receptors leads to increased transduction in the glutamatergic and cholinergic system and facilitates the release of dopamine and noradrenaline. Modulation of 5-HT6 receptors, due to their location and function, may be particularly important for patients suffering from various kinds of dementias with behavioural and psychological symptoms. The objective of the project is to develop a safe, chronic therapy addressed to patients suffering from these disorders.

A new form of S-ketamine in treatment of depression

Depression is among the most common mental disorders in the world and one of the greatest challenges in treatment of this condition is drug-resistant depression. In recent years, it has been shown that ketamine, a known analgesic and anesthetic, is also a strong anti-depressant. A solution currently developed in Celon Pharma laboratories is an innovative route of administration (other than intravenous) of the active substance–S-ketamine. Such a solution will allow for a wider use of the therapy in patients suffering from depression and bipolar disorder and will significantly improve their comfort of lives.