The Dementia Discovery Fund is a close collaboration between charity, industry and the government, to provide much-needed investment in innovative dementia research.
The fund works collaboratively with universities, academic institutes and the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry internationally to identify novel dementia research projects and nurture these through the pre-clinical phase, enabling further development in clinical trials. Its priorities are to explore and develop novel hypotheses in dementia research and to increase global interest and industry confidence in the value of dementia research.
For very early stage programmes, DDF has mechanisms in place to fund up to $1m for hypothesis testing with the aim of company spin-out on achievement of agreed milestones. For companies closer to the clinic, DDF will invest or co-invest larger amounts in order to progress through candidate selection and early clinical trials.
- Gen2 Neuroscience, a UK-based, seed-stage company founded by University of Cambridge Prof Rick Livesey, seeking to identify specific disease-associated forms of tau, a protein closely associated with neurodegeneration.
- Cerevance, a start-up company exploiting a powerful novel platform for identifying and validating new disease targets in human brain tissue developed at Rockefeller University and experienced drug discovery scientists in Cambridge, UK.
- Tiaki Therapeutics, a DDF-formed company industrialising a sophisticated in vitro model of brain immune cell function to identify modulators of microglial function for treatment of neurodegeneration.
- DDF ChemCo, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the DDF with a proprietary 500,000 molecule CNS-focused compound library available for use by DDF portfolio companies, projects and external collaborators.
- Alector, a California-based biotech company developing antibody drugs to boost the brain’s immune response to neurodegeneration with an academic founder from Columbia University.
The DDF is keen to hear from scientists, researchers and companies developing novel therapies for dementia, who are in need of funding and help.