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Alzheimer’s Disease

Prana Comments on Nature Medicine, PNAS and Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease articles that highlight the Role of Metals in Neurological Diseases

Melbourne – 2 February, 2012: Prana Biotechnology (NASDAQ:PRAN; ASX:PBT) today commented on three recent high profile scientific journal articles that the company believes provide support for Prana’s therapeutic strategy for treating neurodegenerative disease.

Professor Rudy Tanzi, the Joseph P. and Rose F. Kennedy Professor of Neurology at Harvard University and Prana’s Chief Scientific Advisor said, “It bodes well for PBT2 that at a time when so many drugs have failed, many independent researchers are shifting their focus around to the role of metals in neurodegenerative disease, providing data that promotes optimism for the outcome of Prana’s trials. Prana’s therapeutic strategy for treating neurodegenerative disease is very different from the anti-beta-amyloid drugs that have failed. I believe that PBT2 has a very good chance of success for providing real benefit to millions of patients in need of effective treatments”.

Recent articles in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science USA (PNAS)1 Journal of Alzheimer's Disease2, and Nature Medicine3, have brought the roles of metals, both in normal synaptic function as well as in disease, into sharper focus. Released successively over the last three weeks of January 2012, the publications relate to different aspects of metal biology in neuronal health and disease and implications for therapy.

Prana has recently commenced clinical trials for Alzheimer's Disease and Huntington's Disease, both using the drug PBT2. PBT2 addresses the disruption in the normal balance of metals (Copper, Zinc and Iron) in the brain, brought on by the accumulation of misfolded proteins in neurodegenerative disease. Proper metal homeostasis is required for healthy brain function.

1 You H et al (2012) Aβ neurotoxicity depends on interactions between copper ions, prion protein, and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors Proc Natl Acad Sci USA www.pnas.org/cgi/doi/10.1073/pnas.1110789109
2 Wang T et al (2012) Clioquinol Reduces Zinc Accumulation in Neuritic Plaques and Inhibits the Amyloidogenic Pathway in AβPP/PS1 Transgenic Mouse Brain

J Alz Dis 28: 1–11
3 Lei P et al (2012) Tau deficiency induces parkinsonism with dementia by impairing APP- mediated iron export. Nat Med doi:10.1038/nm.2613