Brain Lymphatics

Harnessing an overlooked immune and metabolite transport network

Access to recently discovered human brain lymphatics may hold opportunities for targeting neurological diseases

Emerging evidence suggests that the lymphatic system may play a critical role in the health of the central nervous system (CNS). The recently discovered association between the meningeal lymphatic system and the CNS shed new light on the previously accepted rules of human biology, such as CNS immune privilege. These insights around the CNS-immune interface underlie our approach to designing novel categories of therapeutics to address debilitating and devastating CNS disorders.

We are advancing a broad pipeline of programs to treat cognitive deficiency and improve symptoms associated with medical conditions across neurology and psychiatry, including attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), major depressive disorder (MDD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), multiple sclerosis (MS) and various other neuroinflammatory diseases. We are also developing associated clinical monitors and measurement-based care applications. Our lead, patented technology platform is exclusively licensed from the lab of Dr. Adam Gazzaley at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and augmented by proprietary adaptive algorithms developed by our team.

  • Our Approach
    • PureTech is pursuing an approach to address neurodegenerative and neuroinflammatory conditions by harnessing the recently discovered lymphatic system in the brain. In July 2018, the foundational science that underlies PureTech’s internal CNS lymphatics technology was published as the cover story in the prestigious scientific journal Nature. The publication revealed that modulation of lymphatic function in the brain may prevent or delay diseases associated with aging, including Alzheimer’s disease, Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and age-associated cognitive decline. An additional Nature Neuroscience publication in September 2018 highlighted the key role of brain lymphatics in neuroinflammatory conditions such as multiple sclerosis. 
  • Intellectual Property
    • PureTech has broad intellectual property coverage, currently having exclusive rights to fifteen (15) patent applications in five (5) families of patent filings that are licensed from the University of Virginia and which cover compositions of matter, methods of use, and methods of treatment across the platform technology.
  • Collaborations
    • The approach is based on the work of PureTech collaborator Jonathan Kipnis, PhD, Harrison Distinguished Teaching Professor and Chair, Department of Neuroscience, and Director, Centre for Brain Immunology and Glia, at the University of Virginia (UVA) School of Medicine. Exclusively licensed from the UVA Licensing & Ventures Group, the technology will be developed by PureTech in collaboration with Dr. Kipnis to potentially address debilitating and devastating CNS disorders.

More recently, the role of meningeal lymphatics has been validated by other research groups as a key mediator in the clearance of macromolecules such as tau-related proteins and α-synuclein, from the CNS, which speaks to the potentially important role played by this system in tauopathies and Parkinson’s disease respectively.