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BetterLife Pharma secures Mitacs Accelerate funding to research its chronic anxiety and depression candidate

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BetterLife Pharma Inc (CSE:BETR, OTCQB:BETRF)’s bid to advance its TD-010 candidate to treat chronic anxiety and depression has been boosted by a funding award.

The biotech revealed it had been granted Mitacs Accelerate program funding for its joint application with Dr Argel Aguilar-Valles at Carleton University department of neuroscience to carry out research of the drug in preclinical models.

READ: BetterLife Pharma says early positive in vitro results show AP-003 has similar potent efficacy against coronavirus variants

Dr Argel Aguilar-Valles’s team, who are experts on the molecular mechanisms that underlie psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders, will work with BetterLife to test TD-010 in both in vitro and in vivo models that are established in the former’s lab. 

“TD-010 is a potential novel therapy to treat debilitating anxiety disorders that show resistance to benzodiazepine and other therapies or require a long-term use and therefore put patients at risk for dependency,” said Betterlife CEO Dr Ahmad Doroudian in a statement.

“BetterLife’s goal is to bring this treatment to the Investigational New Drug (IND) application and the clinic as soon as possible because it is non-addictive yet potentially highly effective.”

Dr Argel Aguilar-Valles added: “We are delighted to have the opportunity to examine TD-010 in our established animal anxiety models. The high rate of resistance to benzodiazepine and SSRIs for chronic anxiety disorder indicates an urgent unmet need for alternative anxiolytic treatments.

“TD-010 has shown to have more potent anxiolytic effects than its parent compound honokiol and it can be a promising alternative in the treatment of chronic anxiety.”

TD-010 or dihydrohonokiol-B (DHH-B) is a compound that BetterLife is developing primarily for benzodiazepine dependency in addition to anxiety. 

Each year, up to 20% of adults are affected by anxiety disorders and among the most used anxiolytic therapeutics are benzodiazepines, which from mid-February to mid-March, 2020 saw a 34% increase in prescriptions.

But Benzodiazepines have drawbacks, including a high rate of treatment resistance, dependence and serious side effects.

Contact the writer at [email protected]

Story by ProactiveInvestors


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