Catalyst Awardee

Project Description

The Regulation of Formation and Clearance of Amyloid by Photooxygenation

Yukiko Hori, Ph.D. | The University of Tokyo; Taisuke Tomita, Ph.D.; Motomu Kanai, Ph.D.; Youhei Sohma, Ph.D.
Competition Sponsor: Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development
Awardee Year: 2020

Amyloid-selective artificial photooxygenation is our original unique approach for amyloid proteins using small compounds (a.k.a. photocatalyst) and light irradiation. We have successfully showed that the photooxygenation induces the aggregation inhibition and the enhanced clearance of amyloids, such as Aβ and tau, which are causative proteins for Alzheimer disease (AD) or progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) and so on, suggesting the possibility of photooxygenation approach as a therapeutic strategy for AD. The deposition of other amyloid proteins, such as α-synuclein or TAR DNA-binding protein (TDP-43), have also been implicated in the pathogenesis of other neurodegenerative diseases, Parkinson disease, and Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, respectively. Therefore, through the proof of our concept in vitro and in vivo, we would like to propose the amyloid-selective photooxygenation as a common therapeutic optomedical strategy against various neurodegenerative disorders (Figure).
The development of therapeutic strategy for neurodegenerative disorders based on our proposal will contribute to overcome dementia in the aging societies among the world, leading us to live with health and happiness. Additionally, our method may also have big impact on amyloids associated with various systemic amyloidosis in heart, liver and pancreas that have no treatment so far, if it is developed as therapy.

To learn more about this proposal email

View this project poster, first displayed at the 2021 Global Innovator Summit.

Sign up for updates