Rodin is working to discover and develop epigenetic modulators of synaptic resilience for the treatment of cognitive impairment due to Alzheimer’s disease (AD), one of the most significant public health problem of the 21st century. The number of AD patients in the US is estimated at 5.2 million and projected to double by 2050, and the overall cost of care for these patients is projected to reach $1.2 trillion by 2050 (Alzheimer’s Association 2013).
There is a pressing need to develop better therapies to relieve the cognitive and functional impairments of AD, reducing the cost of care and delaying the institution of AD patients. Our lead program is focused on enhancing synaptic health and function, which has been shown to be a major cause of symptoms in AD patients.
Rodin is also investigating the role of HDAC2 in the cognitive dysfunction associated with Parkinson’s disease (PD). Cognitive impairments are a common and life-altering symptom of PD that is not addressed by standard therapy. Rodin is working to develop safe and effective HDAC2 isoform selective inhibitors. By enhancing the function of remaining synapses in the PD brain, Rodin compounds may improve cognition and/or slow cognitive decline. Moreover, through the inhibition of HDAC2, Rodin compounds may have an impact on the course of the disease by protecting neurons from neurodegeneration.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Memories of a traumatic event can cause feelings of grief, guilt, or loss, as well as negative emotional responses such as anger, rage or aggression. However, during the period of time when a memory is recalled it can modified to reduce the negative associations and stressful reactions to it. Rodin is investigating whether selective HDAC inhibitors can reduce not only the immediate effects of trauma but also prevent or reduce the development of later effects, including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Drugs called HDAC inhibitors have already demonstrated the ability to lessen fearful memories in animals (Graff et al 2014). However, the currently available HDAC inhibitors, which were originally developed for cancer, have significant side effects.Rodin Therapeutics has discovered novel, isoform selective inhibitors that target those HDACs critical to memory formation yet spare the function of other HDAC enzymes and are therefore expected to have fewer side effects.