How to develop drugs for neurological diseases | Insights from Josh Bagley

How to develop drugs for neurological diseases

One of the biggest challenges in developing drugs for neurological disorders is that the majority of models available are non-human and just do not work the same way as human brains, therefore when trying to understand the mechanism of action, efficacy, off-target effects and toxicity, these models have significant limitations.

Josh Bagley is the Chief Scientific Officer at a:head bio AG, a spin-out from the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology in Vienna, Austria. a:head has developed a brain organoid platform to aid the development of drugs for neurological disorders.

a:head bio uses cerebral organoids, a 3D culture containing human cell types to give an organ-like structure that contains active neural networks. These cultures recreate brain-like tissue in the lab, and allow us to test therapeutics in this tissue outside of the human body. It has been a specific aim to develop a system that can give reproducible and robust assay results and is amenable to automation.

One of the great highlights of a:head’s work has been the ability to observe disease-specific phenotypes and profile clinically used therapeutics for their ability to alter neuronal network activity.

Josh will be presenting his talk “Drug discovery with human brain biology” at the Advances in Cell-based Screening 2024 Conference in Gothenburg to find out more.

Join him on 15 May in the scientific track ‘The promise of advanced cell models – the path to ‘business as usual’, and the paradigm shift to NAMs (new approach methodologies / non-animal models)

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