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Neurotechnology Industry Organization Launched to Advance Treatments for Brain and Nervous System Illnesses

In Health on October 15, 2006 at 1:56 am

Oct 13 2006, 8:31 AM EST

(BIOWIRE)– More than 20 leading pharmaceutical, medical device, and diagnostic companies, along with major academic brain research centers and patient advocacy groups, have joined together to form a new trade association called the Neurotechnology Industry Organization (NIO). Based in San Francisco, California, NIO is a non-profit group created to accelerate the development of treatments and cures for brain and nervous system diseases.

The $110 billion neurotechnology industry includes pharmaceuticals, biologics, cell-based therapeutics and medical devices, as well as diagnostic and surgical equipment for critical unmet needs including: Alzheimer’s, addiction, anxiety, depression, epilepsy, hearing loss, insomnia, multiple sclerosis, obesity, pain, Parkinson’s, schizophrenia, stroke and other brain-related illnesses.

“Despite the clear need and significant market opportunity, neurotechnology companies face a host of issues that stifle innovation, growth and rapid delivery of effective therapies. NIO will provide a collective voice for commercial neuroscience organizations to address these issues,” said Zack Lynch, Founder and Executive Director of the newly formed Neurotechnology Industry Organization. “We will kick off our first year with a global awareness campaign highlighting the industry’s progress and a public policy tour for members to interact with government officials.”

Over 1.5 billion people worldwide and nearly 100 million Americans suffer from a brain or nervous system illness. In addition to untold human suffering, the annual economic burden has reached over $1 trillion worldwide with $300 billion a year in the U.S alone. This burden is accelerating as the population ages and population increases. These factors are creating unprecedented demand for treatments that delay, prevent and cure chronic neurological and psychiatric diseases.

The 500 companies involved in commercial neuroscience face fundamentally different investment requirements, research and development challenges, and regulatory milestones than other life science and healthcare companies. NIO was created to help governments, patients, and the public understand the unique needs of the neurotech industry.

“We are delighted to be a founding member of NIO,” said J. Donald deBethizy, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Targacept, Inc. “We are pleased that this advocacy group has been formed to address the important issues of our industry.”

Founding member organizations span a broad spectrum of drug, device and diagnostic companies from across the world unified by common interests. They include: Acumen Pharmaceuticals (South San Francisco, CA), Amarin Corporation (London, England), Brain Resource Company (Sydney, Australia), Ceregene (San Diego, CA), Cyberkinetics Neurotechnology Systems Inc. (Boston, MA), NeuroPace (Mountain View, CA), NeuroNova AB (Stockholm, Sweden), Sound Pharmaceuticals (Seattle, WA), Targacept, Inc. (Winston-Salem, NC), and United Therapeutics (Silver Spring, MD); neuroscience research centers including: Allen Institute for Brain Science (Seattle, WA), Blanchette Rockefeller Neurosciences Institute (Morgantown, WV), McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT (Cambridge, MA), and the MIND Institute (Albuquerque, NM); patient advocacy groups and research foundations including: Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (New York, NY), Epilepsy Therapy Development Project (Reston, VA) and Neurotech Network (Tampa, FL); venture capital firms NeuroVentures (Charlottesville, VA) and Technology Partners (Palo Alto, CA); and strategic partner Preston Gates Ellis & Rouvelas Meeds LLP (Washington, DC).

About the Neurotechnology Industry Organization

The Neurotechnology Industry Organization (NIO) is a non-profit trade association that represents a broad spectrum of companies involved in neurotechnology (drugs, devices and diagnostics), neuroscience research centers and brain disease advocacy groups across the United States and the world. NIO’s mission is to accelerate cures for brain and nervous system diseases by promoting the neurotechnology industry’s progress, advocating the industry’s position to government officials, and providing business development services to its members. For more information on the Neurotechnology Industry Organization, please visit http://www.neurotechindustry.org

About the Neurotechnology Industry Organization

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