ImaRx Therapeutics to study blood-brain barrier permeability

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ImaRx Therapeutics announced that the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, a division of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), awarded the company a $950,000 Phase I grant to study changes in the permeability of the blood-brain barrier with targeted microbubbles and ultrasound equipment over the next two years.

When treating malignant and degenerative disorders of the central nervous system, such as brain cancer, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, blood-brain barrier impermeability presents a problem, although it is essential for normal brain function.

The grant stipulates that ImaRx will evaluate whether microbubbles and transcranial ultrasound can safely enhance drug delivery across the blood-brain barrier, according to the Tuscon, Ariz.-based company.

In collaboration with Thomas Porter, MD, at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, ImaRx will begin its research this fall.