Yuva Bio raises $7.5m and partners on hair loss treatment targeting mitochondrial dysfunction

Company teams up with BosleyMD on new ‘densifying’ treatment that aims to restore mitochondrial function and help combat hair loss.

Longevity biotech Yuva Biosciences has secured $7.5 million in seed funding and landed a key consumer partnership for its topical skin and hair treatment targeting mitochondrial dysfunction.  The Alabama-based company has collaborated with hair restoration specialist BosleyMD on the launch of a new “densifying foam” product incorporating Yuva Bio’s Y100 technology.

The tiny mitochondria found in every cell in our bodies produce 95% of the body’s energy, and their depletion as we age is linked to decreased energy levels and a host of age-related issues. Indeed, mitochondrial dysfunction is recognized as one of the hallmarks of aging and is also linked to visible aspects of aging, including wrinkles and hair loss.

Yuva Bio is developing topical treatments designed to up-regulate key genes that restore mitochondrial function and help combat hair loss and skin wrinkles. Using AI, the company combed through thousands of molecules to identify those with the greatest potential to boost mitochondria levels in skin and hair cells, leading to the discovery of its lead compound, Y100.

Yuva’s discovery was lauded as a significant advancement in hair loss by BosleyMD, which is rolling out its new ‘Revive Plus Densifying Foam’ with Y100 technology to retailers, beauty chains, pharmacy chains, and e-commerce sites.

“Applying a unique platform based on mitochondrial science to create breakthrough products for skin care and hair care, as Yuva Biosciences has done, is a real game-changer, with noticeable effects being seen already in multiple clinical trials and now in products on the shelves,” said Dr Shekhar Mitra, former senior VP of corporate innovation at Procter & Gamble, who now leads Yuva Bio’s consumer products innovation efforts.

Yuva Bio is led by Dr Keshav K. Singh, a Harvard-trained researcher whose research helped establish that mitochondrial dysfunction plays a crucial role in hair and skin aging. His 2018 publication in Nature showed experimentally that restoring mitochondrial function reversed wrinkled skin and hair loss in mice, and laid the foundation for the establishment of the company in 2019.

Yuva Bio claims that its mechanism of action also appears to work the same in other tissues and organs in the body, which means that its work in hair and skin may translate to other areas. The company is working to demonstrate a link between mitochondrial dysfunction and ovarian aging and fertility.

“With the world’s first and only proven platform to search specifically for new compounds that improve mitochondrial health, Yuva Biosciences is starting with hair and skin aging, with the potential to address other mitochondrial-related issues such as ovarian aging (fertility and menopausal issues), wound care and more,” said Greg Schmergel, CEO of Yuva Bio.  

The funding round was led by VentureSouth, with participation from Longevity Tech Fund, TBD Angels, and Atma Capital.

“Tens of billions of dollars are spent every year on cosmetics products that address symptoms of aging but don’t actually slow the aging process,” said Matt Dunbar, managing director at VentureSouth. “Yuva Biosciences’ technology solves this problem with once-in-a-generation innovation by fighting a key root cause of aging, mitochondrial dysfunction.”

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