Aptinyx Salutes Retiring Chief Scientific Officer and NMDA Receptor Drug Discovery Pioneer, Joseph Moskal

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EVANSTON, Ill., July 12, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aptinyx Inc. (Nasdaq: APTX), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing transformative therapies for the treatment of brain and nervous system disorders, today announced that Joseph Moskal, Ph.D., the company’s chief scientific officer, will be retiring from his position with the company and focusing on his academic work as a  professor at Northwestern University. Dr. Moskal will continue his close association with Aptinyx in a senior advisory capacity.

“Joe has been working in brain research for decades and is a true pioneer in NMDA receptor pharmacology,” said Norbert Riedel, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Aptinyx. “The work Joe began back in the 1980s has resulted in the remarkable discovery of compounds that we believe have immense potential in the treatment of numerous CNS disorders. We would not be where we are today, with three clinical-stage candidates in or near Phase 2 development, without the incredible dedication Joe has to this science. We cannot over emphasize our appreciation for his work and all he has done for Aptinyx. We wish Joe all the best in his retirement and are very thankful that we will be able to continue leveraging his unparalleled knowledge of NMDA receptors as a senior scientific advisor.”

Dr. Moskal is a professor of biomedical engineering at Northwestern University and director of the university’s Falk Center for Molecular Therapeutics. He previously served as assistant professor and director of the neurosurgery laboratories at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and, earlier, was a staff fellow at the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Moskal was founder and chief scientific officer of Naurex, where he was instrumental in the advancement of rapastinel, a molecule he discovered, prior to the acquisition of Naurex by Allergan in 2015.

“It is difficult to describe the immense satisfaction I have in the incredible arc of the work I started many years ago, which began as a series of experiments to interrogate learning and memory processes and, ultimately, resulted in the discovery of numerous novel compounds now being studied in people who desperately need better treatment options,” said Dr. Moskal. “I take great pride in being involved in the discovery of these molecules, the research into their unique mechanism of action on NMDA receptors, and the unambiguous proof of their activity in the brain and CNS. Their advancement now relies most heavily on clinical development and I have the utmost confidence in the team of drug developers that is fiercely dedicated to translating that activity to efficacy and bringing these compounds to patients in need. I am very excited to be able to spend more time back in academia, but I am also very much looking forward to remaining close to this science and technology in my ongoing role as a scientific advisor.”

Dr. Moskal’s retirement from Aptinyx and transition to an advisory role with the company will commence on August 1, 2019.   Aptinyx Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development, and commercialization of proprietary synthetic small molecules for the treatment of brain and nervous system disorders. Aptinyx has a platform for discovery of novel compounds that work through a unique mechanism to modulate—rather than block or over-activate—NMDA receptors and enhance synaptic plasticity, the foundation of neural cell communication. The company has three product candidates in clinical development in central nervous system indications, including chronic pain, post-traumatic stress disorder, and cognitive impairment associated with Parkinson’s disease. Aptinyx is also advancing additional compounds from its proprietary discovery platform, which continues to generate a rich and diverse pipeline of small-molecule NMDA receptor modulators with the potential to treat an array of neurologic disorders. For more information, visit .

Source: Aptinyx Inc.

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Globe Newswire: 13:30 GMT Friday 12th July 2019

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