Former NFL player, Wes Chandler, a member of the San Diego Chargers Hall of Fame, and most recently an inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame, announced today the formation of a biotechnology company named WCTE Inc. which is dedicated to the diagnosis, intervention, and cure of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE).
At present, the formal diagnosis of CTE can only be made after death, and there is currently no treatment available. CTE is the cause of depression and suicide in numerous football players, according to Chandler, founder and CEO of WCTE.
“WCTE Inc. was formed because of the urgent unmet need to treat my friends and colleagues, who have sacrificed their health and their lives for popular entertainment. Now that they need our help, it is our responsibility to be there for them,” said Chandler, who was a star receiver at the University of Florida before moving on to the NFL. “It is my vision to identify, integrate and incorporate the latest technologies in order to provide a fighting chance for my colleagues.”
CTE has been understudied in contrast to other types of brain injuries, resulting in a time sensitive opportunity for development of intellectual property and therapies in this relatively unexplored area, according to Chandler. In addition to the estimated $2 billion CTE market, technologies developed addressing CTE possess potential to address the substantially larger Alzheimer’s and aging market.
The company’s immediate focus falls upon three areas. First, capturing all intellectual property related to CTE through licensing/filing of patents. Secondly, obtain ID approval to initiate a CTE clinical trial using its clinical state stem cell product WesCellTM. Lastly, generating revenue through sales of NeuroStilbeneTM.
Assisting Chandler in organization of WCTE is Dr. Thomas Ichim, a successful biotechnology entrepreneur whose career successes include taking a stem cell company from discovery of the stem cell to FDA clearance, to sale of the company; 121 peer reviewed papers; 130 patents and patent applications; and successful development of 5 cellular therapeutics that have entered the clinic.
“I am honored to work with Mr. Chandler on helping find a cure for his colleagues and others who suffer from this devastating condition. Having known Wes for several years, I can attest he brings a fresh, multi-disciplinary, goal-oriented, approach to biotechnology. I look forward to working with him in identifying, licensing, and developing key technologies useful for treatment of CTE,” said Dr. Thomas Ichim.