The scientists from IFAR, a Tomsk-based Russian company, found a way to use plant materials for producing a substance that extends human life.
In the current medical practice, the doctors are trying to address the problem of operational stress (which significantly aggravates the mortality and disability rates in patients) by disabling the overall immune response of the body with hormonal, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory and some other drugs. However, these medicines, on the one hand, negatively affect many processes in the body, and on the other, only weaken the adverse effects and body response to the antigen, without stopping the pathological process.
The body itself can produce the substance to stop the inflammatory response, but its amount is inadequate for countering the development of such response under severe stress. Dutch scientists have proposed to introduce the substance from outside and learned how to produce it in a reactor by incubating genetically modified hamster or human cells. These experiments were successful, and the drug is undergoing clinical trials. However, its cost exceeds a thousand euro per dose.
“We found another solution by avoiding the use of mammalian cells or microorganisms, as it is the case in biotechnology,” said Veniamin Khazanov, Director of IFAR. “We managed to introduce human genome into the plant cell and make it produce the desired substance. Given that the biotech manufacturing based on plant cells is hundreds of times cheaper than the use of mammalian cells, our drug (in case of successful completion of technology development and all tests) will be affordable to all consumer segments.”