Ichor Therapeutics

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Ichor Therapeutics (or, more briefly, Ichor) is a startup in the field of rejuvenation biotechnology that is developing a molecular repair therapy for age-related macular degeneration.[1]

The CEO of Ichor is Kelsey Moody.[2]

Ichor is one of the first companies to receive funding as part of the SENS Project 21 funding initiative, with funding provided by Michael Greve.[3]

The following project is described on the Ichor website:[4]

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of vision loss among people over the age of 50, affecting 20 million Americans. It manifests as a gradual loss of central vision, and can be complicated by secondary pathology such as aberrant vascularization or retinal detachment.

The underlying pathology of AMD is thought to be caused by the death of retinal pigmented epithelial (RPE) cells, which photoreceptors in the eye rely upon to survive. While many mechanisms likely contribute to RPE cell death, one hallmark of the disease is the aggregation of non-digestible lipofuscin, which includes the toxic bis-retinoid A2E, in the lysosomes of these cells. A juvenile onset form of the disease called Stargardt disease also exists, and exhibits similar pathophysiology. Elimination or reduction of lipofuscin within RPE cell lysosomes may represent a viable therapeutic strategy to prevent or treat AMD and Stargardt disease.

Ichor is equipping exogenous enzymes known to degrade A2E with lysosomal targeting motifs to assess the utility of an enzyme augmentation therapy using a variety of in vitro and in vivo assays. This is a continuation of research previously conducted by SENS Research Foundation.

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