Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) has teamed up with and SV Life Sciences to fund Autifony Therapeutics, a spin-off from GlaxoSmithKline plc (ADR) (NYSE:GSK) on research for schizophrenia treatments.
The pharmaceutical industry has been extremely busy over the past year, especially with many firms merging or taking part in acquisitions. The aim of such endeavors is to strengthen their position in the industry while at the same time cutting down costs and combining resources for more efficiency. It some rare cases, companies come together on a combined project. This is one of those rare projects. Pfizer and Glaxo have been holding up heavy competition between each other and against other competitors in the pharmaceutical market.
Glaxo and Pfizer are finally working on the same thing. Well, almost because Pfizer has teamed up with SV Life Sciences to generate resources for Autifony Therapeutics. The latter will use the funds to initiate a schizophrenia project this year. The program will include three trials. Another company called Imperial Innovations will also invest in the project together with Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) and Life Sciences. The firms have also invested in research for treatment of auditory dysfunctions.
The shift into schizophrenia research was largely fueled by research findings that claim Kv3 channelshave some influence on the control mechanisms forparvalbumin. The latter refers to a pattern of interneurons that make up a part of the nervous system. Scientists think that schizophrenia causes the mechanism to stop working. Autifony will work on developing a drug that can regulate the Kv3 channels to restore the functions of the neurons.
If Autifony successfully manages to make a drug that can perform the intended task, then the future of patients suffering from mental disorders might be a bit brighter. Autifony has been carrying out research on the subject, and it believes that it has enough data to convince investors that there are chances of success with the project. Some of the funds will be pumped into the schizophrenia trials while a proportion of the remainder will be used in the Biomedical Catalyst program.