May 17, 2011 General News

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals Awarded Grant from National Institutes of Health for the Development of Novel ER-beta Agonists

SAN DIEGO, May 17, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) — ACADIA Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: ACAD), a biopharmaceutical company utilizing innovative technology to fuel drug discovery and clinical development of novel treatments for central nervous system disorders, today announced that it has been awarded a grant from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), a division of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), for the development of novel estrogen receptor beta (ER-beta) agonists for the treatment of neuropathic pain. The grant provides funding of up to $2.4 million and was awarded under the NINDS Fast-Track Small Business Innovative Research Cooperative Program in Translational Research that supports the identification and preclinical testing of new therapeutics for neurological disorders.

“We are delighted to be awarded this NINDS grant, which allows us to advance our promising ER-beta program in the area of neuropathic pain and provides important recognition of our scientific discoveries,” said Uli Hacksell, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of ACADIA. “Our ER-beta compounds also offer the potential for an innovative disease-modifying approach to the treatment of Parkinson’s disease, and our initial studies in this area have been supported by grants from The Michael J. Fox Foundation.”

Studies have shown that estrogen modulates many cerebral functions such as mental state, mood, cognition and perception of pain. Estrogen stimulates both ER-alpha and ER-beta receptors. ACADIA researchers have identified novel and selective ER-beta agonists that may address the symptoms of chronic, inflammatory and neuropathic pain while avoiding the side effects associated with activating ER-alpha receptors. Pursuant to the grant, ACADIA will initially examine the efficacy of selected proprietary ER-beta compounds in preclinical models and intends to subsequently conduct preclinical development studies required in support of potential future clinical studies.

About Neuropathic Pain

Neuropathic pain is a debilitating disorder caused by damage or dysfunction of the nervous system and originates from many diverse sources including diabetic and hereditary neuropathies, herpes, chemotherapy, physical traumas and surgery. Current first-line medications are limited by variable efficacy and adverse effects. There is a major unmet medical need for novel, safe and effective drugs to treat neuropathic pain.

About ACADIA Pharmaceuticals

ACADIA is a biopharmaceutical company utilizing innovative technology to fuel drug discovery and clinical development of novel treatments for central nervous system disorders. ACADIA has a portfolio of four product candidates including pimavanserin, which is in Phase III development as a potential first-in-class treatment for Parkinson’s disease psychosis. ACADIA also has a product candidate in Phase II for chronic pain and a product candidate in Phase I for glaucoma, both in collaboration with Allergan, Inc. as well as a product candidate in IND-track development for schizophrenia in collaboration with Meiji Seika Pharma Co., Ltd. All of the product candidates in ACADIA’s pipeline emanate from discoveries made using its proprietary drug discovery platform. ACADIA maintains a website at to which ACADIA regularly posts copies of its press releases as well as additional information and through which interested parties can subscribe to receive email alerts.

Forward-Looking Statements

Statements in this press release that are not strictly historical in nature are forward-looking statements. These statements include but are not limited to statements related to the progress and timing of ACADIA’s drug discovery and development programs, including clinical trials and the results therefrom, the potential of and the benefits to be derived from product candidates, in each case including the ER-beta program, and potential research and future funding related to the ER-beta program. These statements are only predictions based on current information and expectations and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual events or results may differ materially from those projected in any of such statements due to various factors, including the risks and uncertainties inherent in drug discovery, development and commercialization, collaborations with others, variations in expenses and the fact that past results of clinical trials may not be indicative of future trial results. For a discussion of these and other factors, please refer to ACADIA’s annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 as well as ACADIA’s subsequent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. This caution is made under the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All forward-looking statements are qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement and ACADIA undertakes no obligation to revise or update this press release to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof, except as required by law. The ER-beta program is supported by Award Number U44NS070336 from NINDS. The content of this press release is solely the responsibility of ACADIA and does not necessarily represent the official views of NINDS or NIH.

SOURCE: ACADIA Pharmaceuticals Inc.

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Uli Hacksell, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer
(858) 558-2871

Media Contact

Investor Contact