Marine Organisms for the Treatment of Chronic Pain

Marine Organisms for the Treatment of Chronic Pain

Sea4Us  is a recently created Portuguese biotechnology company that uses marine compounds for the development of novel therapeutic drugs, particularly for chronic pain...

  • 9811

    raised

    171% of 5 750€

    195 backers

  • 18/08/2014

    Expired on

  • Completed

    This project has been successfully funded

Sea4Us  is a recently created Portuguese biotechnology company that uses marine compounds for the development of novel therapeutic drugs, particularly for chronic pain...

Sea4Us  is a recently created Portuguese biotechnology company that uses marine compounds for the development of novel therapeutic drugs, particularly for chronic pain (see below) – a clinical condition that does not have a proper treatment. Scientific research developed at Sea4Us revealed that certain marine species, currently with no commercial value and that are found on the rocky bottoms of our sea, demonstrate enormous potential for the treatment of chronic pain.

Although we have raised some funding, this is not yet available and is allocated to specific laboratory activities of our project. At the moment, we have no funds to dive and collect marine samples, something that is essential and the basis of all our activities. This crowdfunding campaign is intended to raise funds in order to collect samples for a period of a month and a half, planned for the end of this summer. This is the season with the best weather conditions for diving. Missing the summer diving season will result in postponing all downstream laboratory activities for another year.

The activity of collecting marine samples comprises several steps: 1) identification and collection of species of interest; and 2) suitable processing and storage at the collection site. Only then proper laboratory analysis of bioactive compounds produced by these marine species and the testing of analgesic activity in models of chronic pain are possible. Collecting marine samples represents only a small part of our project to develop a new painkiller, but it is crucial for it!

 

Mar4

Mar4

What is chronic pain?

Chronic pain is a syndrome caused by various pathologies (diabetes, cancer, arthritis, fibromyalgia, shingles, etc.) and it affects 1.5 billion people worldwide (21% of world population), causing a huge negative impact on society. Besides being a terrible condition for these patients, it also has enormous associated economic costs. Among the direct costs are, for example, health care costs, while indirect costs correspond to workplace absenteeism and low productivity, caused by the intense pain. In Portugal, for example, the weight of the direct and indirect costs on the economy, related to chronic pain, represent nearly 3% of gross domestic product (GDP)! Although there are effective and safe analgesics for mild pain, there are no effective treatments for moderate and severe pain, and the ones that exist cause non-negligible side effects.

What is Sea4Us's strategy?

Some marine invertebrates such as sponges, anemones, corals or bryozoans, among others, are the only animals on our planet that are fixed to the rocks and at the mercy of predators, without being able to escape. Millions of years of evolution on these marine animals resulted in highly specialized and ingenious solutions for defense against predators. In the absence of spines or strong shells, the development of toxins that act as chemical defenses is very common. These toxins are often paralyzing anesthetics or powerful painkillers. Here lies the inspiration of Sea4Us and its enormous potential for the discovery of new therapeutic compounds.

It is time to determine the true value of biodiversity of our sea, particularly for the strategic area of biotechnology! The solution for the treatment of chronic pain is in the nature. This is Sea4Us’s belief. Help us in this quest!

 

About the author

 

Sea4Us is a Portuguese biotechnology company that performs scientific research projects focused on the search for bioactive compounds from marine organisms. Our laboratory results demonstrate bioactivity of natural compounds of Portuguese marine origin in cellular models representative of chronic pain.

PEDRO A. LIMA

Pedro A. Lima has a BSc degree in Marine Biology and Fisheries by the University of Algarve and holds a PhD in Neurophysiology from the University of Sheffield (UK). On the one hand, he has knowledge and experience in Biochemistry, Pharmacology and Neuroscience; on the other, he has expertise in biology of the species and aquaculture techniques. It is from the convergence of these two major areas, Marine Biology and Neuroscience, that this project was born.

FILIPE VILAS-BOAS

Filipe Vilas-Boas holds a BSc degree in Microbiology and Genetics and a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Lisbon. He performed his PhD studies on the embryonic development of the nervous system at the Institute of Molecular Medicine in Lisbon and the University of Dundee in Scotland.

"Every time we dive and collect marine extracts, new scientific advances can arise in biomedicine and as well as new possibilities for pharmaceutical drugs."

MARISA SOUSA

Marisa Sousa graduated in Pathology at the Lisbon Polytechnic Institute and holds a PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics from the University of Lisbon. She developed part of her PhD research at the University of Regensburg (Germany) and the State University of Campinas (Brazil).

"There are still several human diseases with no therapeutic response, including Chronic Pain; and our idea was to find a way to respond to this need, using marine animals, particularly those who use toxins to defend themselves from predators, creating a new generation of drugs."

HUGO PACHECO

Hugo Pacheco holds a BSc degree in Economics from the Technical University of Lisbon and subsequently a Post-Graduate degree in Financial Analysis. He is currently Director of Pre-sales and Solution in the area of Business Process Transformation in the field of document management.

 

Equipa

Equipa

  • Invest with
    5€ or more

    Your name on sea4us.pt.

    37 backers

  • Invest with
    10€ or more

    Your name on sea4us.pt and acknowledgment e-mail.

    65 backers

  • Invest with
    25€ or more

    Your name on sea4us.pt and acknowledgment e-mail with picture from the bottom of the sea (21x14.5cm).

    24 backers

  • Invest with
    50€ or more

    Your name on sea4us.pt, personalized acknowledgment letter with picture from the bottom of the sea (21x14.5cm) and magnet "I sponsor Sea4Us" (shipping expenses included).

    45 backers

  • Invest with
    150€ or more

    Your name on sea4us.pt, personalized acknowledgment letter with picture from the bottom of the sea (21x14.5cm), magnet "I sponsor Sea4Us", exclusive T-Shirt and mug "I sponsor Sea4Us" (shipping expenses included).

    6 backers

  • Invest with
    350€ or more

    Your name on sea4us.pt, personalized acknowledgment letter with picture from the bottom of the sea (21x14.5cm), magnet "I sponsor Sea4Us", exclusive T-Shirt, mug "I sponsor Sea4Us", unique artistic piece with inspiration from the sea bottom, visit to the laboratory in Lisbon where you will also enjoy a snack (snack expenses included).

    1 backer

  • Invest with
    500€ or more

    Your name on sea4us.pt, personalized acknowledgment letter with picture from the bottom of the sea (21x14.5cm), magnet "I sponsor Sea4Us", exclusive T-Shirt, mug "I sponsor Sea4Us", unique artistic piece with inspiration from the sea bottom, visit to the laboratory in Lisbon, snorkeling and an exclusive dinner with Sea4Us promotors in Sagres, including a detailed debrief of the next steps of the project (costs of snorkeling and dinner included).

    7 backers

Sun, 18/11/2018 - 15:28

18/08/2014

Campaign ended

The campaign successfully raised the initial target

Wed, 06/08/2014 - 19:11

Obrigado!

É uma gratidão enorme esta que todos nós sentimos. Em nome de todos da Sea4Us, muito obrigado! Atingimos o objectivo e o que queremos garantir a todos os que nos ajudaram, é ...

Read more

Campaign launched

20/06/2014

Join us so you can take a part in this campaign. Register

  • Jorge costa serrao

    O futuro está no fundo do mar e Portugal, aí, é um potentado...

    ...

    Log in or register to post comments

  • Sea4Us - Biotech

    Obrigado!

    É uma gratidão enorme esta que todos nós sentimos. Em nome de todos da Sea4Us, muito obrigado!

    Atingimos o objectivo e o que queremos garantir a todos os que nos ajudaram, é que o financiamento vai ser gasto com rigor, dedicação e empenho. Graças a vós, vamos levar a cabo esta campanha que se vai desenrolar durante os meses de Setembro e Outubro.

    Informamos que todo o apoio que exceda o orçamento apresentado será usado criteriosamente em actividades ligadas ao mesmo projecto, isto é, ao desenvolvimento do produto com aplicações na dor crónica.

    Muito Obrigado,
    Pedro Lima
    Marisa Sousa
    Filipe Vilas-Boas
    Hugo Pacheco

    Log in or register to post comments

  • Maria Marta de Castro

    Votos de grande sucesso pelo

    Votos de grande sucesso pelo vosso projecto.

    Log in or register to post comments

  • Sea4Us - BiotechMaria Marta de Castro

    Obrigado! :)

    Obrigado! :)

    Log in or register to post comments

195 members of the PPL community
support this campaign

  • 164
    new backers

  • 31
    recurrent backers

  • 0
    anonymous backers

Meet the people helping this dream come true