Key technology：direct reprogramming technology using small-molecular compounds
This is a technology in which a compound or other substance is added to cells to convert them into a different type of cell. Unlike conventional techniques, this technology does not introduce genes into cells, which may greatly reduce the risk of adverse effects on cells and the risk of tumorigenesis. In recent years, direct reprogramming from somatic cells such as fibroblasts to regenerative medical cells such as neurons, cartilage cells, cardiomyocytes, and hepatocytes has been reported.
- Takeda Y, Harada Y, Yoshikawa T, Dai P. Direct conversion of human fibroblasts to brown adipocytes by small chemical compounds. Sci. Rep., 7: 4304, 2017.
- Takeda Y, and Dai P. A developed serum-free medium and an optimized chemical cocktail for direct conversion of human dermal fibroblasts into brown adipocytes. Sci. Rep., 10: 3775, 2020.
- Takeda Y, Yoshikawa T, and Dai P. Transcriptome analysis reveals brown adipogenic reprogramming in chemical compound-induced brown adipocytes converted from human dermal fibroblasts. Sci. Rep., 11: 5061, 2021.
- Takeda Y. and Dai P. Capsaicin directly promotes adipocyte browning in the chemical compound-induced brown adipocytes converted from human dermal fibroblasts. Sci. Rep., 12: 6612, 2022.
- Takeda Y. and Dai P. Chronic fatty acid depletion induces uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) expression to coordinate mitochondrial inducible proton leak in a human-brown-adipocyte model. Cells, 11:2038, 2022.
Our technology is the direct reprogramming of skin cells to energy-consuming cells called “brown adipocyte” by adding low-molecular-weight compound. Brown adipocyte consume a large amount of energy, and if they can be increased or transplanted in the body, they are expected to be useful for the treatment of obesity and other diseases. EPD is promoting development in the following two business areas.
- Cell Therapy Business EPD is aiming for the prevention and treatment of obesity and diabetes by producing brown adipocyte from a patient’s own cells and administering them back the patient.
- Weight Loss Supplement Creation Business EPD is exploring functional dietary supplements that can be expected to burn fat with the aim of commercializing them, by adding candidate substances to brown adipocyte created with our technology and evaluating the cells, including their activity.
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