BUFFALO, N.Y.Feb. 15, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Today, a research team from Everon Biosciences, Inc. and Roswell Park Cancer Institute has published a new study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS) describing a new biomarker of senescent cells and a specific monoclonal antibody that could potentially be used to develop a practical assay to detect senescent cells. This assay would significantly speed up the development of anti-aging drugs capable of slowing down or even reverting human aging.

Senescent cells originate from normal cells of our body that irreversibly cease to proliferate in response to DNA damage. They are viewed as major contributors to aging, and therefore, as targets for anti-aging therapies. Studying the mechanism(s) of formation, as well as recognition and elimination of senescent cells, has been hindered by the lack of senescence-specific markers. This new report shows that senescent cells expose on their surface and secrete into the blood an oxidized form of vimentin, a cytoskeleton protein that is normally present inside cells. This new marker of senescent cells is recognized by a naturally occurring IgM antibody that belongs to the innate immune system and is likely to be involved in a natural mechanism of immune recognition and clearance of senescent cells. The antibody isolated in this work could lead to a vital and noninvasive assay for studying senescence and monitoring age-related illnesses.

“Our team has made one more step towards understanding the dynamics of senescent cells in the organism. Recently, we reported the discovery of a specific subclass of macrophages involved in the recognition of senescent cells. Our current work defines one more component of a specific branch of innate immunity responsible for the recognition and clearance of senescent cells and presumably involved in keeping us young. Understanding the natural mechanisms that clean our bodies from senescent cells helps develop rational approaches to slow down or even revert the aging process.” said Andrei Gudkov, Ph.D., DSci, Chief Scientific Officer of Everon Biosciences and Sr. VP Basic Science at Roswell Park Cancer Institute.

“This discovery was made through a combined effort of a multidisciplinary team of scientists in Buffalo, NY from Everon Biosciences Inc. and Roswell Park Cancer Institute,” said Alexander Polinsky, Ph.D., President and CEO of Everon Biosciences. “Having a reliable biomarker to assay the presence of senescent cells is very important step for accelerating both drug discovery and drug development programs.”

The study, “Senescent cells expose and secrete an oxidized form of membrane-bound vimentin as revealed by a natural polyreactive antibody,” will be published in the next issue of PNAS and is available online starting today.

About Everon Biosciences
Everon Biosciences, Inc. is a private biotechnology company focused on developing novel anti-aging therapeutics. Aging is a systemic process of progressive dysfunction of tissues and organs associated with chronic inflammation, changes in tissue composition and the quality of cells within the tissues. Everon is a leader in understanding cellular mechanisms of aging and translating this knowledge into development of anti-aging therapies. Everon Biosciences, Inc. is headquartered in Buffalo, New York.

For more information, please visit www.everonbio.com.

Contact: Moish Soloway, 718-755-1017