NIH funds Bionovo for female-specific obesity, metabolic syndrome drugs
The US National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) Small Business Technology Transfer Program, has granted funds to Bionovo and Dale Leitman of University of California at Berkeley (UCB).
The grant is expected to support the first phase of a multi-phase study to evaluate Bionovo's plant derived tissue selective estrogen receptor modulators for preventing obesity and the metabolic syndrome.
University of California Department of Nutrition and Toxicology adjunct associate professor Leitman said that their laboratory has been collaborating with Bionovo to understand the mechanism of Bionovo's very promising novel selective estrogen receptor modulators to prevent diseases that occur during menopause.
“This award from NIH is a testament to the potential of Bionovo's compounds to transform hormone therapy for menopausal women and the importance of understanding the biological basis for their unique actions," Leitman said.
"To date, our results have demonstrated that Bionovo's drugs behave very selectively in that they reduce body mass and fat re-distribution without causing breast or uterine cell proliferation in mice. The funds from NIH will be used to further evaluate their safety in a variety of animal models."
Bionovo chairman and CEO Isaac Cohen said that this grant will allow Bionovo, to continue its research for developing safer, efficacious drugs for the treatment of major health indications that are currently poorly served.