The biotech platform that is leveraging one of the cornerstones of evolution – mitochondria.
Mitochondria play a crucial role in the aging process, activating factors and metabolic pathways involved in longevity. Their dysfunction impacts on both lifespan and healthspan, and whilst they have been identified as disease targets for some time, mitochondria have proven difficult to treat.
The founders of cellvie wondered if it were possible, as they put it, to leverage one of the cornerstones of evolution – to replace and augment damaged mitochondria. And so, the concept of Therapeutic Mitochondria Transplantation was born. TMT holds the potential of sustainably affecting mitochondria function, and reinvigorating or amplifying the cellular energy metabolism – and having raised $5 million in Kizoo-led seed funding, cellvie is on the way to turning that possibility into a reality.
Longevity.Technology: Dr Alex Schueller, Cellvie’s CEO, will be speaking at Berlin’s Rejuvenation Startup Summit (14-15 October 2022), as part of an all-star line-up that includes Michael Greve, Eric Verdin, Brian Kennedy, Michael Sidler, Christian Angermayer and our own Phil Newman. Hosted by the Forever Healthy Foundation, this vibrant networking event aims to accelerate the development of the rejuvenation biotech industry.
Ahead of the Summit, we caught up with Alex Schueller for a video interview in which he shares his views on ischemia-reperfusion, Therapeutic Mitochondria Transplantation and cellvie’s product pipeline. Check it out below:
Alex Schueller on…
The growth and direction of cellvie
With Kizoo’s investment, we were able to grow far beyond our initial plan. The primary object of the seed round has been, on the one hand, to establish off-the-shelf mitochondria that you can freeze, that you can thaw and that can be immediately used by the physician. The second objective has been to broaden the pipeline – in addition to ischemia-reperfusion injury, we wanted to establish Therapeutic Mitochondria Transplantation therapy in other indication areas and bring it about as a platform, as a category of medicine.
We’ve been working towards aging. As one of the nine hallmarks of aging, mitochondria have a pivotal role to play in many degenerative processes, so we’ve been looking at what therapeutic mitochondria can do, and where that can intersect with age-related degeneration. There is, specifically in muscle degeneration, a specific play we believe we can exploit down the road.
From lab to market
For some aging-related diseases, you need a clinical trial of multiple years to prove that your therapy actually works. So a lot of start-ups, cellvie included, are looking for a frontrunner indication which has a more timely endpoint. This is why our frontrunner indication is ischemia-reperfusion injury as we believe we have very straight-forward clinical endpoints, such as heart attacks and the function of the heart thereafter and subsequent survival rates. This will allow us to take the technology to a very attractive market and make it a profitable business opportunity, and then to develop, longer-term, aging-related applications.