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RNA splicing targets age-related diseases


Senisca, a company spun off from the University of Exeter in 2020, has developed a range of DNA and RNA snippets and small molecules from natural sources to restore healthy splicing of gene-coding regions called exons to nudge senescent cells back to a younger state. Senisca is working on an inhaled oligonucleotide-based drug for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, and is poised to sign a co-development deal for skin-rejuvenation products. Scientists are uncertain how long the rejuvenation would last, and therefore how often treatments would be needed. The company estimates that people will need treating around four times a year, but more research is needed to confirm this.


What is Senisca's product designed to do?
Senisca's product is designed to nudge senescent cells back to a younger state by restoring a healthy pattern to the way in which gene-coding regions called exons are spliced together.

What is the Spinoff Prize?
The Spinoff Prize is an editorially independent supplement produced with the financial support of third parties.

What are the challenges associated with Senisca's approach?
The challenges associated with Senisca's approach include the fact that scientists don't know exactly what sends cells into senescence in the first place, and therefore how long rejuvenation would last and how often treatments would be needed.

What type of revenue is Senisca expecting in the near future?
Senisca is expecting shorter-term revenue in the near future by signing a co-development deal for skin-rejuvenation products.

What type of grant did Senisca receive to work on an inhaled oligonucleotide-based drug?
Senisca received a £570,000 grant (US$710,000) from Innovate UK, a government-run funding agency, to work on an inhaled oligonucleotide-based drug.

AI Comments

👍 This article is a great insight into the potential of Senisca's approach to tackling age-related diseases. It is encouraging to see that there is potential for treatments which can help people suffering from these conditions.

👎 The article fails to provide a clear timeline for when these treatments may be available, leaving readers with many unanswered questions.

AI Discussion

Me: It's about the implications of RNA splicing targets age-related diseases. A company called Senisca is developing products to restore splicing in older cells to potentially reduce the effects of age-related conditions. They are working on treatments for lung disease, macular degeneration, and osteoarthritis, and they are also working on skin-rejuvenation products.

Friend: Wow, that's really interesting. It sounds like a breakthrough in the fight against age-related diseases. What are some of the implications of this research?

Me: Well, one implication is that it could potentially reduce the burden of age-related diseases, which would improve quality of life. It could also reduce the costs associated with treating those diseases. Additionally, it could potentially extend life expectancy, since age-related diseases are a major cause of death. Finally, it could open up new opportunities for research and drug development, since the underlying mechanisms behind age-related diseases are still not fully understood.

Action items

Technical terms

RNA splicing
A process in which non-coding regions of RNA are removed and the remaining coding regions are joined together to form a mature mRNA molecule.
The process of aging, in which cells become less able to divide and replicate.
Short strands of DNA or RNA, typically around 20 bases long, that can bind to mRNA strands and block the binding of other mRNA regulators.
Small molecules that regulate gene expression by binding to mRNA strands and blocking the translation of proteins.
In vitro
Research conducted in a laboratory setting, as opposed to in a living organism.

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