Ronald Zenk, president and chief executive officer of Humanetics, said Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York and Humanetics were issued a patent supporting a long-term, multiyear research collaboration in developing NIC5-15 -- a compound from in pine cones and grape seeds.
The compound was found in preclinical studies and animal models to be effective in preventing the formation of beta-amyloid plaques, Zenk said.
Amyloid plaques are believed to be a leading cause of Alzheimer's disease, the researchers said.
A phase IIa study was completed at the Mount Sinai Alzheimer's Disease Research Center in 2008, Zenk said.
"We are pleased that NIC5-15 has reached this critical milestone," Zenk said in a statement. "There is an urgent need for safe and effective disease modifying agents to lessen the debilitating symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. We are hopeful that NIC5-15 will satisfy that need."