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Novel Derivatives of Docosahexaenoylethanolamide as Therapeutics for Neuronal Disorders

Posted Jan 23 2013 7:00pm

Description of Invention:
This technology provides derivatives of Docosahexaenoylethanolamide (synaptamide or DEA) which have increased potency and hydrolysis resistance as compared to DEA (structures of these derivatives are available upon request), as well as methods of using these derivatives to promote neurogenesis, neurite growth, and/or synaptogenesis. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), an n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid that accumulates in the brain during development, has been shown to play a key role in learning and memory development. Studies have also shown that DEA, a metabolite derived from DHA is very potent in accelerating neuronal growth and development. The inventors have discovered that the novel DEA derivatives they have designed are even more potent than DEA or DHA in accelerating neuronal growth, synaptogenesis and development. The inventors have shown that treatment of progenitor neural cells with some of these novel DEA derivatives leads to an increase in the amount of somatic neurons produced after differentiation. These novel compounds can be developed as therapeutics for conditions such as trauma, stroke, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, brain and spinal cord injuries, and peripheral nerve injuries for rehabilitation.

  • Agents to promote neurogenesis, neurite growth, and synaptogenesis.
  • Therapeutics for neurological conditions, such as traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, peripheral nerve injury, stroke, multiple sclerosis, autism, Alzheimer’s disease, Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

These derivatives of DEA provide increased potency and hydrolysis resistance compared to DEA.

Development Status:
  • Prototype
  • Early-stage
  • Pre-clinical
  • In vitro data available

Erika E Englund (NCATS)
Juan J Marugan (NCATS)
Samarjit Patnaik (NCATS)
Hee-Yong Kim (NIAAA)

Patent Status:
HHS, Reference No. E-070-2012/0
US, Application No. 61/624,741 filed 16 Apr 2012

Relevant Publication:
  1. Kim HY, et al. [ PMID 21281269 ]
  2. Kim HY, et al. [ PMID 21810478 ]
  3. Cao D, et al. [ PMID 19682204 ]

Collaborative Research Opportunity:
The National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in collaborative research to further develop, evaluate or commercialize this technology. For collaboration opportunities, please contact Dr. Juan Marugan at or Dr. Krishna Balakrishnan at .

For Licensing Information Please Contact:
Suryanarayana Vepa Ph.D.
NIH Office of Technology Transfer
6011 Executive Blvd. Suite 325,
Rockville, MD 20852
United States
Phone: 301-435-5020
Fax: 301-402-0220

Ref No: 2517

Updated: 01/2013

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