NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – MitoSciences has won a $590,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health to develop companion diagnostic tests for antiviral drugs, the Eugene, Ore.-based company said Thursday.
Developed through collaborations with the University of Oregon, the tests will enable doctors to identify adverse effects from drugs used to treat HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, and other infectious diseases. Many drugs used to treat these diseases cause toxic side effects that are often due to inhibition of mitochondrial function, the company said.
MitoSciences said that its test can identify drug toxicity before outward symptoms have begun to show.
"A number of drugs that were removed from the market are now known to inhibit mitochondrial function, and we are working with groups at most of the world's largest drug companies to help them include mitochondrial toxicity screening in their safety assessment programs," MitoSciences CEO Jean-Paul Audette said in a statement.
The company has already developed the MitoTox line of assays, which identify adverse mitochondrial effects caused by a wide range of therapeutic compounds and are offered as kits and as a service.
The grant was issued under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.