BioHealth Capital Region Spotlight: Creative Bio-Peptides Awarded $5.78 Million from NIH to Develop Breakthrough Treatments for Neuroinflammatory/Neurodegenerative Indications

By November 29, 2021News

Creative Bio-Peptides, Inc., an emerging drug development company focused on the development of leading-edge multi-chemokine antagonist therapeutic peptides for neuroinflammatory/neurodegenerative conditions, has been awarded $5.8M in non-dilutive funding from three NIH agencies.

“BHI congratulates Creative Bio-Peptides on this significant accomplishment and recognition by the National Institutes of health,” said Rich Bendis, President & CEO, BioHealth Innovation. “We are proud of our partnership with Creative Bio-Peptides and how both teams worked together in successfully submitting multiple proposals which were funded in this extremely competitive SBIR process.”

The two grants each represent multi-million-dollar funding over a 2-year period as part of the NIH’s HEAL Initiative, committed to providing safe non-opioid pain treatments for the 50 million Americans living with daily chronic pain as well as the 2 million Americans living with dependency or addiction to opioids.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) SBIR phase II award is for the further development of Creative Bio-Peptides’ oral formulation of chemokine antagonist RAP-103, a safe, non-opioid treatment for OUD that can block motivation to maintain opioid use and mitigate signs of opioid withdrawal, as demonstrated in a previous phase I grant from NIDA.

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke award is to develop RAP-103 as a non-opioid treatment for the relief of chronic pain. Pre-clinical data supports evidence that these oral peptides block and reverse neuropathic pain by blocking microglial activation and monocyte infiltration, reversing neuro-inflammation, and repairing nerve damage.

The National Institute on Aging awarded a second research grant to Creative Bio-Peptides for the optimization of a chemokine receptor antagonist peptide as a synapse protecting treatment for neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s Disease. Creative Bio-Peptides is developing a safe, oral treatment that has the potential to reverse the cognitive decline of this debilitating disease.

Michael Ruff

“We are excited to announce our partnerships with multiple Institutes of the NIH with a goal of pursuing an IND designation for our lead compound, RAP-103, in the first half of 2023”, said Michael Ruff, President/CEO. “Our talented team has worked tirelessly to move us closer to accomplishing our mission of offering life-changing treatments for three significant unmet medical needs: chronic pain, OUD and dementia.  RAP-103’s mechanism of action has the potential to repair and regenerate neurons in neurodegenerative diseases and enable OUD patients to reduce their dependance on deadly opioids. In addition to the hard work of our team, we appreciate the assistance from BioHealth Innovation in preparing the SBIR grant applications through its Federal Funding Assistance program.

About Creative Bio-Peptides. Inc.

Creative Bio-Peptides was founded in 2017 by Michael Ruff, PhD, with the mission of advancing a class of novel multi-chemokine receptor antagonists, therapeutic peptides, into clinical trials to treat debilitating neurological diseases. Creative Bio-Peptides’ portfolio consists of over 25 peptides representing over $75M in total research and development. Most recently, Creative Bio-Peptides’ focus has been on the research and validation of its lead compound, RAP-103. The company is currently conducting IND enabling studies and expects to pursue an IND designation for RAP-103 in the first half of 2023.

About BioHealth Innovation, Inc.

BioHealth Innovation, Inc. (BHI) is a public-private nonprofit organization focused on accelerating biohealth (therapeutic, diagnostic, medtech, and health IT) commercialization in the BioHealth Capital Region (Maryland, DC and Virginia). BHI’s team of expert Entrepreneurs-in-Residence, in-house venture analysts, and other professional staff work in the region to:

  • Facilitate technology commercialization,
  • Raise the profile of the industry cluster and individual organizations,
  • Increase access to capital for early stage and growing companies, and
  • Expand the pool of talent with commercially relevant experience.

BHI’s early stage company support includes market research and commercialization plan development; non-dilutive funding application assistance; a jobs board;  event calendar; and introductions to investors, strategic partners, business advisors, and potential clients. BHI also manages wet lab space and provides referrals to other space for early stage companies, offers soft-landing support for international companies, and works with partners to co-host the annual BioHealth Capital Region Forum and an annual BioHealth Capital Region investor partnering conference. For more information:

# # #

Media Contacts:
Michael Simon
Creative Bio-Peptides, Inc.
Phone: 301-351-2240, email:

Rich Bendis
BioHealth Innovation, Inc.
Phone: 301-637-6439, email:

Join our Mailing List