Renovis, Inc.

Brief Description

Renovis, Inc. was a biopharmaceutical company developing drugs to treat neurological diseases and disorders.

Renovis, Inc. was acquired by Evotec AG in 2008.

Renew, Restore, Repair

Dr. Corey S. Goodman joined the faculty at the University of California at Berkeley in 1987 as a Professor and became Evan Rauch Professor of Neurobiology and Genetics, co-founder and Director of the Wills Neuroscience Institute, and an Investigator with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Along the way he also was elected a member of the National Academy of Sciences. Dr. Goodman has forged a direct link between molecular biology and axonal guidance by discovering and cloning key genes that encode a set of ligand molecules and their receptors that influence the wiring of the brain, including how neurons find their correct targets, make appropriate synaptic connections, and establish the size and strength of those connections. He and his team identified the homologues of many of these "wiring" genes in humans and other mammals. Some of this work was done in collaboration with the laboratory of his colleague Dr. Marc Tessier-Lavigne, at the time a Professor at the University of California at San Francisco and today a Senior Vice President at Genentech. These genes are likely to control important aspects of human brain development, and in addition to providing insights into brain wiring, may hold the key for clinical insights into neurological disease and repair of nervous system injury. Recently, a number of researchers have reported that some of these molecules are also involved in pathologic angiogenesis and have the therapeutic potential to treat cancer and other angiogenic disorders.

The University of California licensed the technology developed in Dr. Goodman's laboratory to Renovis, a biopharmaceutical company developing drugs to treat neurological diseases and disorders that Dr. Goodman co-founded (with Tessier-Lavigne) in 2000 and subsequently joined as President and Chief Executive Officer in September 2001. Renovis currently focuses its research and development activities on major medical needs in the areas of pain, trauma and stroke, and neurodegenerative diseases.

Renovis has continued development of the University of California technology and has initiated activities to develop new types of biotherapeutics for neurological diseases and disorders, including the trauma caused by spinal cord injury, by regrowing the right type of central nervous system axons and connections.

Building on this effort, Renovis recently formed a research and development collaboration with Genentech to discover and develop drugs that promote nerve re-growth following nervous system injury and inhibit pathological or tumor angiogenesis. Renovis will evaluate and potentially develop and commercialize protein biotherapeutic candidates for the treatment of spinal cord injury and other neurological diseases and disorders. Genentech will evaluate and potentially develop and commercialize therapeutics for the treatment of cancer and other diseases in which angiogenesis plays a significant role.


Corey Goodman

Tech Category

  • Medical Therapeutics

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