Veterans have made sacrifices for our country – they may engage in combat and experience physical and/or psychological trauma, be separated from their families and friends for lengthy periods and endure highly stressful circumstances during and post-service. In totality, they face unique challenges for maintaining and restoring brain health.
Many veterans have experienced and are suffering with the invisible wounds of war (post-traumatic stress disorder (PTS/PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and on top of this we are facing increasing rates of suicide.
Yet, for the past 17 years, there have not been any new FDA-approved treatments to address PTSD. Nor are there any currently available objective diagnostics or biomarkers for PTSD or for the chronic neuropsychiatric effects of TBI.
Cohen Veterans Bioscience was awarded a contract from the U.S. Department of Defense Medical Research and Materiel Command to establish a clinical trial infrastructure for PTSD pharmacotherapeutics and to conduct one of the first studies in the field utilizing innovative adaptive platform trial design.
Cohen Veterans Bioscience will collaborate with Parexel Biotech, a new division of Parexel for the study. Parexel Biotech will provide clinical trial implementation services over a multi-year period. We are delighted to be part of this important adaptive platform trial exploring a precision medicine approach for the treatment of PTSD,” says Parexel CEO Jamie Macdonald. We look forward to partnering with CVB on this innovative trial design in the brain disorders arena and to contributing to this important new therapy, which has significant potential to benefit patients.”
Learn more about the strategic collaboration and the Adaptive Clinical Trial, which will start in 2020.
State of the Science Summit: Paths to Treatment for Traumatic Brain Injury(s)
The Brain Trauma Blueprint is a strategic roadmapping effort facilitated by a series of State of the Science Summits aimed to accelerate an era of personalized medicine for survivors of brain trauma.
This year CVB convened global thought leaders to collaborate and assess the gaps in the science and ways to work toward new paths to treatment for Traumatic Brain Injury(s).
As part of the effort to include the patient perspective in our research, CPT John E. Cebak, DO, PhD, KY Army National Guard discusses his experiences with TBI and PTSD I am a different person. I struggle with living in a fog, problems with attention, concentration, balance, vision, communication and nightmares.”
The blueprint is designed to identify the underlying biology of these symptoms and provide personalized treatment options for our Veterans like Johnny and all patients living with these invisible wounds. Leaders are finalizing the recommendations from the summit and the outcome will be published in 2020.
Identifying Genetic Links to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
In collaboration with The Stanley Center for Psychiatric Research at the Broad Institute at MIT and Harvard, we announced findings from a study published in Nature Communications.
Advancing a Precision Therapeutic Approach to PTSD Diagnosis & Treatment
In April 2019 we announced findings from the first study identifying a PTSD brain imaging biomarker. This is the first study to demonstrate that PTSD patients can be reproducibly sub-divided into distinct groups based only on their biological signature. An important first step in advancing a precision therapeutic approach for PTSD, the study revealed that a patient’s biotype may determine which PTSD treatment could work best. With this biomarker, we may be able to identify which patients will respond to psychotherapy and which will not, giving clinicians a powerful tool to personalize therapy and to guide people towards the most effective treatment options for them.
Progress on Veterans Brain Health Advocacy
The Coalition to Heal Invisible Wounds is a collaboration of members committed to solving brain health issues important to veterans, including veterans advocacy groups, non-profit research foundations, and pharmaceutical companies.
With a shared passion for improving PTSD and TBI outcomes through advocacy, the Coalition educates Congress on the top brain health care concerns to shape how government research dollars and resources are allocated.
As a member of this Coalition, our President and CEO, Dr. Magali Haas testified in front of the House Committee Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Health hearing, “Beyond the Million Veterans Program: Barriers to Precision Medicine” about the urgent need for policy reforms to widen and expedite the pipeline for new therapies and diagnostics to treat PTSD, traumatic brain injury (TBI) and suicide prevention. To watch the hearing, click here.
Representing, Advocating and Supporting Veterans’ Interests
Cohen Veterans Bioscience is sponsoring the formation of a Veterans Advisory Council (VAC) to ensure that we deliver meaningful results for Veterans through data-driven science and advocacy. The VAC will serve as a voice by providing advice and strategic recommendations for CVB’s mission and objectives.
Cohen Veterans Bioscience is a non-profit 501(c)(3) biomedical research and technology organization dedicated to advancing brain health by fast-tracking precision diagnostics and tailored therapeutics.