NEURODEGENERATIVE DISEASES

UNS is developing best-in-class, innovative therapeutics for Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases.

 

The unmet medical need is staggering. There are currently no cures or effective disease-modifying treatments for many of the diseases of the brain. Globally, the economic burden for neurological disorders is $1 trillion; Alzheimer’s alone costs the US over $200 billion. More devastating however is the impact on the lives of those chronically affected — the loss of productivity, the loss of physical and mental functioning, and the overwhelming burden on family and friend caregivers.

 

We are targeting both common and orphan neurodegenerative diseases, including:

 

Alzheimer’s Disease (AD)

AD is the most common form of dementia among older people. Dementia is a brain disorder that seriously affects a person’s ability to carry out daily activities. There is currently no cure. AD afflicts 5.4 million patients in the US alone and is the 6th leading cause of death in the US. Globally, there are an estimated 44 million people who suffer from AD. In the US alone the AD economic burden is quite significant with over $200B being spent on direct costs annually, with indirect costs being over $1 trillion.

 

Parkinson’s Disease (PD)

PD is a disorder of the brain that leads to shaking (tremors) and difficulty with walking, movement, and coordination. There are currently over 1 million sufferers in the US and PD is the 14th leading cause of death in the US. The estimated economic impact in the US alone is estimated at $25B annually and there is currently no cure. Worldwide, an estimated 7-10 million people are living with Parkinson’s Disease.

 

Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD)

FTD refers to a diverse group of neurodegenerative disorders caused by progressive nerve cell loss in the frontal and/or temporal lobes. Among dementia types, it is second only to Alzheimer’s disease in prevalence. The disease progresses at a rapid rate with patients eventually needing 24-hour for daily functions.

 

Lewy Body Dementia (LBD)

Related to Alzheimer’s disease, LBD is a progressive form of dementia that leads to a decline in thinking, reasoning, and independent function. It is caused by protein deposits, called Lewy bodies, that accumulate in the nerve cells of the brain. It is estimated that 1.4 million suffer from LBD in the US alone.

 

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. There are 30,000 cases in the United States with the average life expectancy post diagnosis being 2-5 years. Global prevalence rates for ALS are estimated at between 4 and 6 per 100 000 population. There is currently no cure for ALS.

 

Multiple System Atrophy (MSA)

MSA is a rare neurological disorder that impairs the body’s autonomic functions including blood pressure and digestion and movement. MSA affects potentially 15,000 to 50,000 Americans, develops in adulthood and progresses rapidly over the course of 5-10 years and eventually leads to death. There are currently no drugs that are able to slow the disease and no cure.