Cenna Biosciences, Inc. is a privately-held biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of novel drugs for the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD).
Problem: The underlying cause of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is the inappropriate deposition of the toxic species Aß in the brains of patients. No disease-modifying drug is currently available that can stop the progression of AD.
Solution/Product: Cenna has developed a novel druggable target and has discovered several active lead compounds. Cenna’s novel technology inhibits the production of Aß by over 50 percent in vitro and in AD transgenic mice.
Market Details: The AD market is growing rapidly. There are nearly 8 million sufferers in the 7 major markets of the world. The current market for symptomatic AD therapeutics is about $5.8 billion per year, and the introduction of disease-modifying drugs will increase it to $14.5 billion. Cenna anticipates that its therapeutics will have a significant impact on both treatment and prevention and be useful throughout the course of the disease.
Competitive Advantage and Value Proposition: Cenna’s approach is different, specific, and interferes with only the reaction that produces Aß, as opposed to failed approaches that targeted the ß- and γ-secretases, which affect multiple reactions and which have all failed due to off-target effects. Cenna’s novel technology does not target, modify, or inhibit ß- or γ-secretase activities. Cenna’s candidates inhibit Aß production by specifically binding APP at a different site from the ß- and γ-secretase cleavage sites and arresting its processing to Aß (Dewji NN, et al., 2015, PLoS ONE).
Funding: Cenna has been funded almost entirely by grants from the NIH (~$21million since the start of the work with the latest award of $3.3 million in September 2020) and by the Founders. Cenna is seeking a Pre-Series A round of $7.5 million to fund operations for the next 18 months in order to complete the pre-clinical development of its lead small molecule and peptide drug candidates and prepare preclinical scientific packages for filing INDs.