Amorfix technologies enable researchers to distinguish between normal and disease causing proteins
Amorfix Life Sciences is developing diagnostic devices and targeted therapeutics for diseases where misfolded proteins are implicated. Amorfix technologies enable clinicians to distinguish between normal and misfolded proteins, and to identify unique regions exposed on misfolded proteins that are not exposed on proteins in their normal conformation. There is a growing list of misfolded protein diseases which includes Alzheimer's Disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), variant Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease (vCJD) and cancers.
How Proteins Contribute to Disease
All cellular functions, such as breaking down food and creating energy, are driven by proteins.
The activity of proteins, however, has to be tightly controlled. If cells produce too much or too little of a certain protein, the outcome may be disease.
Another way in which proteins may be responsible for disease involves protein misfolding. Proteins that assume an incorrect three-dimensional shape may not be able to perform their required function and this may also result in disease.
Amorfix focuses on understanding, diagnosing, and treating diseases that are caused by misfolded proteins.
Protein Misfolding is Involved in Various Diseases
Detecting aggregated misfolded proteins is a significant challenge because the misfolded proteins are present in blood or biofluids at very low concentration amongst very high levels of normal proteins. Amorfix developed its Epitope Protection™ (EP) technology to distinguish between normal and aggregated misfolded proteins. Using the power of our ProMIS™ technology, Amorfix is a pioneer in the ability to identify and selectively target misfolded proteins associated with disease.
- All proteins have unique shapes that define their roles and interaction with other proteins.
- Environmental factors and genetic mutations can affect a protein's structure, or three-dimensional shape, causing it to misfold.
- Some misfolded proteins can no longer perform their functions leading to various diseases.
- Misfolded proteins often clump together, forming aggregates.
- The aggregates are toxic to some cells such as neurons and lead to diseases such as Alzheimer's Disease, ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease), and vCJD.
Diagnostic and Therapeutic Strategy
Amorfix diagnostic and therapeutic platforms rely on their ability to distinguish between normal and misfolded proteins.
Amorfix's therapeutics are designed to target and neutralize only the misfolded conformation of a given protein. This allows proteins that are correctly folded to continue their normal function.
Amorfix's diagnostics can detect low concentrations of misfolded aggregated proteins in a diseased patient sample, even when surrounded by an abundance of normally-folded proteins.