Cascade Biotechnology INC | Complement Therapeutics; novel approach to CNS/PNS disease management using the innate complement system.
Cascade Biotechnology is developing therapeutics that use the body’s complement system to attack diseases and disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD), schizophrenia (SZ), myasthenia gravis (MG), Neuromyelitis Optica (NMO), cancer, adult macular degeneration (ADM), blood diseases such as paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH), atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS) and others.
The complement system is an important part of the innate immune system, which helps to protect the host against infection and connects innate and adaptive immune systems.
Complement consists of more than 30 proteins that are activated through a series of proteolytic cleavages, which in turn activate proteins in the next step of the complement cascade.
There are three complement activation pathways, the classical pathway, activated by the presence of antibodies on the cell surface, the lectin pathway, activated by the recognition of certain carbohydrates on cell surfaces, and the Alternative Pathway, which is constantly activated by spontaneous conformational changes to C3, the most common complement protein.
All three activation pathways come together through C3 activation. C3 activation allows for the activation of another complement protein, C5, that initiates the terminal complement pathway. This pathway forms the macromolecular Membrane Attack Complex (MAC), which is able to destroy invading pathogens by punching holes in their cellular membrane.
While complement proteins serve an important regulatory role in inflammation, over activation of complement ultimately leads to disease states. Inhibiting overactive complement offers one strategy for managing and potentially preventing a range of disease and disorders.
See: Fritzinger DC, Benjamin DE (2016) The Complement System in Neuropathic and Postoperative Pain. Open Pain J. (2016);9:26-37.