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The NGF system and its interplay with endocannabinoid signalling, from peripheral sensory terminals to the brain: new targets for the development of next generation drugs for neuropathic pain

Objective

So far, there are no effective treatments for neuropathic pain (NP), and current treatments suffer from serious unwanted side effects.
The NGF ligand-receptor system has recently emerged as a novel target for NP of great therapeutic potential, a master regulator, controlling both neuropathic and inflammatory components. Besides being a multi-component system, it also modulates the endocannabinoid (EC) signalling. Blocking the NGF signaling system is therefore a rational and thoroughly validated approach to pain therapy. Extensive evidence for potent analgesic efficacy of antiNGF mAbs has been obtained in preclinical models and in clinical trials,showing remarkable analgesic efficacy and creating great expectations for this new class of analgesic compounds.However potential safety concerns related to off-target side effects have been raised and recently the FDA called for more preclinical research. To fully exploit the huge therapeutic potential of NGF system, we built a consortium of leading researchers in the NGF, EC and pain scientific arena.The innovative proposal will investigate new strategies for the treatment of different NP forms, based on the NGF system and its interplay with EC signalling, focussing at different levels of the pain transmission and perception systems.
The project results will provide solid, mechanism-based grounds for the development of already identified second-generation therapeutics, based on the “NGF target” system, as well as for the identification and validation of new druggable targets emerging from the elucidated mechanisms. It will also identify biomarkers for NP, validated in animal models and clinical samples, that could result in future clinical benefits, for the stratification of patients suffering from different neuropathies and their treatment.
The project will contribute to the understanding and controlling NP mechanisms, with an interdisciplinary approach, leading to the development of next-generation NGF targeting drugs.

Call for proposal

FP7-HEALTH-2013-INNOVATION-1
See other projects for this call

Coordinator

SCUOLA NORMALE SUPERIORE
Address
Piazza Dei Cavalieri 7
56126 Pisa
Italy
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 1 159 329
Administrative Contact
Larissa Zoni (Ms.)

Participants (8)

FONDAZIONE EUROPEAN BRAIN RESEARCHINSTITUTE RITA LEVI
Italy
EU contribution
€ 837 898
Address
Via Regina Elena 295
00161 Roma
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Silvia Marinelli (Dr.)
AARHUS UNIVERSITET
Denmark
EU contribution
€ 776 000
Address
Nordre Ringgade 1
8000 Aarhus C
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Lone Romar Larsen (Mrs.)
MEDIZINISCHE UNIVERSITAET WIEN
Austria
EU contribution
€ 710 215
Address
Spitalgasse 23
1090 Wien
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Jürgen Sandkühler (Prof.)
LEVICEPT LTD
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 271 334
Address
Ramsgate Road Discovery Park Innovation House
CT13 9ND Sandwich Kent
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Simon Westbrook (Dr.)
KING'S COLLEGE LONDON
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 610 214
Address
Strand
WC2R 2LS London
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Paul Labbett (Mr.)
UNIVERSIDAD DE SALAMANCA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 492 314
Address
Calle Patio De Escuelas 1
37008 Salamanca
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
María De Los ángeles Serrano García (Prof.)
GENOMNIA SRL
Italy
EU contribution
€ 505 143
Address
Corso Magenta 56
20123 Milano
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Anna Moles (Dr.)
INSTITUT NATIONAL DE LA SANTE ET DE LA RECHERCHE MEDICALE
France
EU contribution
€ 498 384
Address
Rue De Tolbiac 101
75654 Paris
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Jérémy Bonnassies (Mr.)