J-Pharma Receives Award from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society to Develop JPH034 as a Potential Treatment for Progressive Multiple Sclerosis

October 5,
J-Pharma Co., Ltd.

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J-Pharma Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Yokohama, Kanagawa; Masuhiro Yoshitake, President & CEO) has received an award from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s Fast Forward Commercial Research funding program. The award will support the development of a novel LAT1 inhibitor JPH034 for its potential to address the unmet need for better therapies for progressive forms of multiple sclerosis (MS).

The Fast Forward commercial research funding program was launched by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society in 2006 to support research that bridges the preclinical commercial funding gap by targeting funds to de-risk therapeutic development. One objective is to catalyze outside investment by funding critical work needed to better-position projects for subsequent commercial development for the benefit of people living with MS. The Fast Forward grant program is a competitive, expert-reviewed funding opportunity to support commercial organizations that are developing new therapies for the treatment of MS. Since 2009 the Society has granted over $24 million to 52 projects in commercial and academic organizations through the Fast Forward Program.

The Fast Forward award will support the preclinical JPH034 research development program. President and CEO of J-Pharma, Mr. Masuhiro Yoshitake noted, “We are thrilled to be the recipient of the award and eager to advance our understanding of JPH034 and its usage in the treatment of progressive MS.”

“The Society is eager to support preclinical development of J-Pharma’s LAT1 inhibitor JPH034, targeting innate immunity to reduce inflammation and create a permissive environment for remyelination. People living with progressive forms of MS need better treatment options, so we look forward to exploring the potential beneficial impact on MS progression”, noted Mark Allegretta, Ph.D., Vice President, Research, National MS Society.

About JPH034

Targeting compartmentalized chronic active inflammation in the central nervous system (CNS) driven by activated microglia may be a viable therapeutic strategy to promote remyelination and prevent disease progression in MS. Studies have found that amino acids and their metabolites modulate immune activity in the CNS and influence oligodendrocyte differentiation and remyelination efficiency. LAT1 plays an important role in the differentiation of certain cells involved in autoimmune and allergic diseases. The novel LAT1 inhibitor (JPH034) was discovered by Professor Yoshikatsu Kanai et al. at Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine. Joint research on MS with various academic collaborators suggests JPH034 may represent a novel mechanism of action compared to existing MS therapies.

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable disease of the central nervous system. Currently there is no cure. Symptoms vary from person to person and may include disabling fatigue, mobility challenges, cognitive changes, and vision issues. An estimated 1 million people live with MS in the United States. Early diagnosis and treatment are critical to minimizing disability. Significant progress is being made to achieve a world free of MS.

About the National Multiple Sclerosis Society

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, founded in 1946, is the global leader of a growing movement dedicated to creating a world free of MS. The Society funds cutting-edge research for a cure, drives change through advocacy and provides programs and services to help people affected by MS live their best lives. Connect to learn more and get involved: nationalMSsociety.org, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube or 1-800-344-4867.

About J-Pharma:

J-Pharma was founded by Dr. Hitoshi Endo (Professor Emeritus, Kyorin University) to build a platform for SLC transporter drug discovery and create innovative drugs. The Company is a drug discovery venture whose mission is to satisfy unmet medical needs by building an SLC transporter drug discovery platform and creating innovative medical treatments. In particular, the Company is focusing on drug discovery targeting LAT1 (SLC7A5), an amino acid transporter on the cell membrane surface that has been the focus of much attention in recent years.

For inquiries regarding this matter, please contact:
J-Pharma Corporation
Public Relations, Administration Department
J-Pharma Co., Ltd.
Fax: 045-506-1156