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Longevity Briefs: Therapeutic mitochondrial transfer generates $5M worth of seed funding

Posted on 2 February 2021

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Longevity briefs provides a short summary of novel research in biology, medicine, or biotechnology that caught the attention of our researchers in Oxford, due to its potential to improve our health, wellbeing, and longevity.

Why is this research important: Mitochondria are often referred to as the powerhouse of the cell.

They are structures found within cells that facilitate cellular respiration. Respiration is one of the most fundamental processes in all of biology.

Via complex metabolic interactions the mitochondria converts oxygen and glucose to carbon dioxide, water and, most importantly, ATP, or chemical energy, crucial for chemical reactions in maintaining cellular homeostasis.

The dysfunction of mitochondria has been tied to a host of diseases, ranging from neurodegenerative ailments such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, over heart attacks and strokes, to age-related degeneration.

What did the researchers do: Harvard spin-off CELLVIE, has recently generated $5M worth of seed funding to grow their mitochondria transfer therapy. This novel medicine sees the introduction of healthy, viable mitochondria into children whose cells are failing due to mitochondrial dysfunction.

Key takeaway(s) from this research: In a clinical trial carried out on paediatric patients who were on heart-lung support, at Boston’s children hospital, 80% of the treated children experienced myocardial recovery.

The implications of our findings are groundbreaking. We may have the chance to bring about a new treatment modality. The investment will enable us to pursue the platform broadly, including a first application in aging, where the need for mitochondria-recovery is particularly dear

Dr. Alexander Schueller, founder and CEO of CELLVIE. Source: Biospace

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