Autism Spectrum Disorder
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD), a neurodevelopmental disorder, is characterized by impaired sociability and communication, irritability, along with restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior. Studies show that in the US, 800k-1.35m children under 18 years of age have ASD.
Autism is complex, with a spectrum of symptoms and a wide range of severity. The negative impact on the lives of patients with autism is at best limiting, and at worst completely disabling.
No drugs are approved for treating the social deficits that are characteristic of the disorder.
Two atypical antipsychotics (Risperidone and Aripirazole) are approved to treat irritability. These drugs can improve behavior in some children, but are accompanied by severe side effects, including significant weight gain and only about half of children respond to these treatments. These drugs block the brain’s receptors for dopamine and serotonin and were initially developed to treat schizophrenia.
MapLight is making rapid progress toward treatment of the core clinical features of Autism, as well as associated conditions of Autism. Our platform has demonstrated the utility of MPL001 for the improvement of sociability and irritability in multiple animal models of autism. MPL001 is in a Phase 1 trial.