The goal is to develop tests to determine whether drugs will elicit mitochondrial toxicity.

NIH awarded MitoSciences a $590,000 grant to support the development of companion diagnostics for antiviral drugs. The tests will be designed to help identify whether treatments for HIV, hepatitis, and other infectious diseases are likely to demonstrate mitochondrial toxicity.

The project will be carried out in collaboration with the University of Oregon. The team will exploit MitoScience’s MitoTox™ assay technology.

“Drug-induced mitochondrial toxicity is a problem that is receiving growing recognition,” according to Jean-Paul Audette, CEO. “A number of drugs that were removed from the market are now known to inhibit mitochondrial function.”

MitoSciences specializes in the development of mitochondrial antibodies, mitochondrial assays, and products and services for mitochondrial-toxicity screening. The firm has generated what it claims is the world’s largest collection of antimitochondrial mAbs. It has developed kits for drug discovery and toxicity studies as well as tools for the diagnosis of mitochondrial-related diseases and mitochondrial toxicity due to highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART).

The firm’s MitoTox™ assays are offered both as kits and also as a service through its contract research division. Work is also ongoing with clinical research partners to validate a number of the MitoTox assays for use in clinical applications including diagnostics, MitoSciences adds.

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