Kogenix Therapeutics, Inc. is an early stage gene therapy company developing treatments for debilitating and fatal neurodegenerative diseases. The company plans to develop one-time single dose therapies using adeno-associated virus vectors (AAV) aiming to increase levels of Klotho protein in the brain. The first targeted indications are Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and multiple sclerosis (MS).
Klotho is a large protein produced in the kidney and brain that acts as a circulating growth factor, involved in neuroprotection, neuroregeneration, remyelination and cognition in the CNS. Thus, Klotho-deficient mice show many signs of human aging including cognitive decline, synaptic loss, abnormal CNS myelin, osteoporosis, atherosclerosis and die prematurely. Moreover, in humans, Klotho levels are very low in the aged brain. In contrast, transgenic Klotho mice live 30% longer, are healthier and smarter, and gene therapy approaches for boosting the level of Klotho protein in the CNS led to significant improvements in memory and cognition.
The company, based in Boston (US), was founded in August 2016 by Dr. Miguel Chillon, an ICREA researcher at UAB and VHIR, Dr. Assumpció Bosch, Associate Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at UAB, Dr. Carmela Abraham, Professor of Biochemistry, Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics at Boston University (BU), and Menachem Abraham (CEO), Director on the boards of a dozen private and public companies. Kogenix Therapeutics.