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Cleveland Researchers Develop a New Treatment for Multiple Sclerosis and Launch a Company to Test It

The management team at Convelo Therapeutics includes founding researchers Drew Adams, second from left, and to his left, Paul Tesar.  The company is developing small molecule therapeutics that,  in laboratory testing, stimulate myelin regeneration.
CONVELO THERAPEUTICS
The management team at Convelo Therapeutics includes founding researchers Drew Adams, second from left, and to his left, Paul Tesar. The company is developing small molecule therapeutics that, in laboratory testing, stimulate myelin regeneration.

A team at Case Western Reserve University has come up with a new approach to treating Multiple Sclerosis. They’ve also launched a business to bring the new therapy to market.

The company is called Convelo Therapeutics.

Co-founders Paul Tesar and Drew Adams collaborated on research at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine that focused on restoring the brain cells that produce the protective coating on nerve cells called myelin.

In MS the myelin is stripped away, leading to loss of movement and other impairments for those affected.

Tesar and Adams discovered a set of molecules that allow cells in the brain called oligodendrocytes to repair the damage.

Tesar hopes the new company can bring the drugs from the lab to the bedside.

“Something that Drew and I felt very strongly about was to get this out into the commercial sector into an early-stage company that could develop and discover these and other molecules with the ultimate goal of being able to test these in patients,” Tesar said.

Investors provided $7.8 million in seed capital to begin the work of testing in humans.

Tesar said the company will also begin development of therapies for brain injuries and Alzheimer’s using the new technology.

MS affects 2.3 million people worldwide.

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Jeff St. Clair
A career in radio was a surprising turn for me seeing that my first love was science. I studied chemistry at the University of Akron and for 13 years lived the quiet life of an analytical chemist in the Akron area,listening to WKSU all the while in the lab.