Seelos Therapeutics announced it has received a grant from the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research to continue to research its gene-editing therapy, SLS-004, as a potential treatment for Parkinson’s disease.
SLS-004 uses the lentivirus to methylate the SCNA gene, which is responsible for the production of alpha-synuclein. Previous research has demonstrated that individuals with impaired SCNA genes express levels of alpha-synuclein as high as 200%, and researchers believe a 25%-50% reduction in SCNA mRNA can restore it to normal levels.
In July 2021, Seelos announced positive results from in vivo testing of SLS-004, demonstrating a 40% reduction in alpha-synuclein levels in a Parkinson’s disease model. Additionally, it released positive results from an in vitro study in a model of dementia with Lewy bodies this past June, also showing a 40% reduction in alpha-synuclein.
Seelos will advance preclinical studies in both Parkinson’s and Lewy body dementia, with results expected later this year. “The selection of SLS-004 to receive grant funding from The Michael J. Fox Foundation is a strong validation of our program and should significantly raise the profile of our program,” said Raj Mehra, Ph.D., Chairman and CEO of Seelos.