Targeting G3BP Proteins to Accelerate Nerve Regeneration

Description:

Reference #: 01241

The University of South Carolina is offering licensing opportunities for using a technology that speeds up protein synthesis to accelerate the re-generation of damaged nerves.

 

Background:

Despite the fact that regeneration occurs in the periphery, abysmally slow growth means that by the time regeneration occurs in humans, the distal nerve is no longer a growth-supportive environment and the target tissues are no longer receptive for reinnervation (restoration, either spontaneously or by surgical grafting, of nerve supply to a part of the body from which it has been lost). There is therefore a pressing clinical need for treatments that will accelerate axon regeneration in peripheral nerves. Locally-generated proteins are needed for regeneration after a peripheral nerve injury and recent evidence inticate that the injured spinal cord axons can use this mechanism of localized protein synthesis. Although neurons generate their own proteins within their axons, the process is slow. Recent work indicates that this protein synthesis can be sped up to increase nerve regeneration.

 

Invention Description:

The subject invention is a cell-permeable polypeptide that specifically targets mRNA storage sites in neurons, increases translation of mRNAs, and increases rates of regeneration after traumatic injury. This is used as the basis of therapeutic development.

 

Potential Applications:

Regeneration in the brain and spinal cord is thought to fail because of extrinsic inhibitors of axon growth and low intrinsic growth potential of central nervous system neurons. Some approaches to increase intrinsic growth potential of neurons have been shown to also overcome the extrinsic growth inhibitors. There is pressing clinical need for better agents to increase intrinsic growth that directly target the axons. This invention provides an opportunity for the stimulation of this growth.

 

Advantages and Benefits:

There are currently no available treatments to accelerate ‘regeneration’. The approach in this invention involves the targeting of the protein synthesis process in the distal axon, the compartment of the neuron that needs to be regenerated to restore function. Consequently, this provides a unique way to increase intrinsic growth potential of the neuron.

 

Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Technology Commercialization
University of South Carolina
technology@sc.edu
Inventors:
Jeffery Twiss
Pabitra Sahoo
Keywords:
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