ElectroCore said yesterday it inked a collaborative research deal with Massachusetts General Hospital exploring the use of ElectroCore’s non-invasive vagus nerve stimulation tech in targeted treatments for neuroinflammation.
The Basking Ridge, N.J.-based company said that investigators will examine the effects the nVNS system has on neuroinflammatory mechanisms associated with conditions in the central nervous system including pain, trauma and neurodegeneration.
ElectroCore said it will supply up to $1 million through a research grant over four years to support preclinical trials of the device, including work already initiated this quarter.
Research includes exploring the effect of nVNS on persistent neuroinflammation and neurological outcomes after concussive traumatic brain injury and the efects of the nVNS system on microglia cells and their association with the development and progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
“We are proud to partner with a renowned research institution like Massachusetts General Hospital, whose core scientific mission aligns with our belief that it is through the deep understanding of the mechanisms of potential therapies that we learn to best help patients suffering from debilitating conditions. We look forward to the outputs of our collaborative research efforts to better elucidate the effects of non-invasive vagus nerve stimulation on neuroinflammation, and its role in the treatment of conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease and traumatic brain injury,” ElectroCore chief science officer J.P. Errico said in a prepared statement.
The trials follow earlier preclinical studies at MGH, supported by ElectroCore, exploring neuroinflammatory mechanisms associated with migraines and their treatment with neuromodulation tech.
“At Massachusetts General Hospital, we are committed to deepening our understanding of disease and novel potential therapies, and have consistently sought out partnerships that can help us do so, especially in areas with great unmet need. We look forward to having the opportunity to explore the effects of this non-invasive approach to vagus nerve stimulation on neuroinflammation, which we increasingly understand to be a core aspect of neurologic disorders ranging from pain, to trauma, to degeneration,” Dr. Cenk Ayata of Massachusetts General Hospital, who is positioned to lead the new program, said in a press release.
In May, Electrocore registered for an initial public offering worth nearly $75 million, detailing plans to expand its GammaCore device beyond the two headache treatments it’s already cleared for in the U.S.