Advances of mitochondria as a therapeutic agent

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Agregar a calendario 2021-09-04 10:00:00 2021-09-04 12:00:00 Advances of mitochondria as a therapeutic agent The mitochondria is close to transitioning from an intracellular organelle to a therapeutic agent. Before its full application to patients it is important to understand key aspects regarding its extracellular survival and interaction with host cells and tissues. As new and exciting research is being evidenced, such as the presence of functional mitochondria outside cells in blood and their genetic editing, a concerted effort is required to understand how mitochondria could be applied to treat diseases and lesions and to what extent. The development of new therapeutic options in medicine has been hampered by the lack of consensus among practices, how assays are performed, and how results are published. The Universidad San Francisco de Quito (USFQ),  Mitochondrion, the Universidad de los Andes in Chile (UANDES), Cells for Cells, the School of Medicine USFQ, Medical Students Association USFQ, the iBioMed Institute USFQ, Dragon BioMed USFQ and ThermoFisher Scientific collaborate to launch the special issue and online webinar “Advances of mitochondria as a therapeutic agent”.   Broadcast Facebook and Youtube Live :  The link will be shared through the social media of USFQ, Dragon BioMed, and event partners.     Register for updates!    Facebook and Youtube USFQ America/Guayaquil public
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La mitocondria está a punto de pasar de ser un orgánulo intracelular a un agente terapéutico. Antes de su plena aplicación a los pacientes, es importante comprender los aspectos clave relativos a su supervivencia extracelular y su interacción con las células y los tejidos del huésped. A medida que se evidencian nuevas y apasionantes investigaciones, como la presencia de mitocondrias funcionales fuera de las células en la sangre y su edición genética, se requiere un esfuerzo concertado para entender cómo podrían aplicarse las mitocondrias para tratar enfermedades y lesiones y en qué medida. El desarrollo de nuevas opciones terapéuticas en medicina se ha visto obstaculizado por la falta de consenso entre las prácticas, la forma de realizar los ensayos y la publicación de los resultados. La Universidad San Francisco de Quito (USFQ), Mitochondrion, la Universidad de los Andes de Chile (UANDES), Cells for Cells, la Facultad de Medicina USFQ, la Asociación de Estudiantes de Medicina USFQ, el Instituto iBioMed USFQ, Dragon BioMed USFQ y ThermoFisher Scientific colaboran para lanzar el número especial y el webinar online "Avances de la mitocondria como agente terapéutico".


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Keshav Singh

Keshav Singh, PhD

Dr. Singh is one of the world leaders in the field of mitochondrial determinants of health, disease, diversity, health disparities and personalized medicine. Currently, he is the Joy and Bill Harbert Endowed Chair and Director of Cancer Genetics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He is also a Professor of Genetics, Pathology and Environmental Health. Besides a mitochondrial role in health and disease, he is an expert in mitochondrial genetics, numtogenesis, cancer genetics, and cancer health disparities. He is the founding editor-in-chief of the Mitochondrion journal as well as Cancer Health Disparities.

Dr. Singh founded the Mitochondria Research and Medicine Society in the US and India and is instrumental in promoting understanding and awareness of the mitochondrial diseases around the globe. He has organized numerous scientific meetings and workshops on mitochondria related topics. He has also given many keynote lectures and chaired or co-chaired scientfic sessions in national and international professional meetings. Dr. Singh has served or serves on the editorial board of many journals. He is the author of more than a hundred research publications and three books. He has served or serves on expert grants review panels in the United States, Austria, Italy, UK, Poland, Singapore, and other countries. He has won numerous awards.

Dr. Singh did his undergraduate degree in India, Ph.D. in Australia and the postdoctoral studies at Harvard, USA. After completing his postdoctoral studies, he joined John Hopkins as Assistant Professor of Oncology at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. Prior to moving to Univeristy of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), he was at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo NY where he rose through the ranks to Professor and then to Distinguish Professor of Oncology.

andres caicedo

Andrés Caicedo, PhD

Professor - Researcher at USFQ School of Medicine, CEO of Dragon BioMed, Regional Secretary for the International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy (ISCT), Head of Research and Development of Medical Systems (SIME-USFQ). Master and Ph.D. in Cell Therapy from the University of Montpellier, France.

He did his post-doctorate at the Institute for Research in Biotherapies in Montpellier. His team's research work focuses on the use of mitochondria as a therapeutic agent.

maroun khoury

Maroun Khoury, PhD

Researcher at the Faculty of Medicine of the Universidad de los Andes in Chile (UANDES), CEO of Cells for Cells, Scientific Director of the Regenero consortium. Master and Ph.D. in Gene Therapy from the University of Montpellier, France. Postdoctoral fellow at the Koch Institute of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), USA, and researcher in charge of a Cell Therapy project at the Singapore-MIT Alliance (SMART) laboratories in Singapore. He is a member of the scientific committee of the International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy (ISCT). His research group belongs to the Cell Therapy and PhD Program of the Center for Biomedical Research and Innovation (CiiB).

Jayme Nunes de Souza

Jayme Nunes de Souza Filho, MSc

Bachelor in Science by University Mackenzie, São Paulo, in 1985
Master of Science signed by University of São Paulo, in 1989
Specialist in Molecular Biology signed by Regional Council of Biology (CRB-1), in 1996 Jayme has started his career in 1991 at former Life Technologies (GIBCO BRL) as Business Scientific Manager until 2001.

He had the opportunity to work for several others well-known Biotech Companies in the Life Sciences Market.
Early 2021, Jayme joined Thermo Fisher Scientific as Market Development Manager with focus on Biosciences.

james d

James D. McCully, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Surgery at Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School Hospital, CSO and founder of CellVie. Dr. McCully's research focuses on the mechanisms that contribute to myocardial cell death. In particular, his laboratory has investigated factors leading to ischemia/reperfusion injury in the neonate, child, mature male and female, and elderly, with particular emphasis on developing novel and specific cardioprotective protocols based on the use of mitochondria as a therapeutic agent.

patricia luz

Patricia Luz, PhD

Researcher at the Faculty of Medicine of the Universidad de los Andes in Chile (UANDES), Head of the Immunometabolism and Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSC) group. His research interests have focused on the study of the regenerative and immunosuppressive capacities of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC). Particularly, the study of the interaction of MSCs with cells of the immune system, particularly with proinflammatory Thelper 1 and Thelper17 lymphocytes. His research team is currently engaged in evaluating the role of metabolism in the immunosuppressive and regenerative properties of MSCs and their extracellular derivatives, including small microvesicles enriched in exosomes using murine models of diseases such as osteoarthritis, graft-versus-host disease, collagen-induced arthritis.


Arash Kheradvar, MD, PhD

Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Medicine at the University of California, Irvine. Dr. Kheradvar's research focuses on the field of Cardiovascular Engineering and capitalizes on his multidisciplinary expertise in Bioengineering and Medicine. Projects in his laboratory range from cardiac imaging to heart valve engineering, and from biomechanics and fluid dynamics to regenerative medicine and mitochondrial engineering. Dr. Kheradvar received an M.D. from Tehran University of Medical Sciences in 2000 and a Ph.D. in Bioengineering from Caltech in 2006. He has published over 63 peer-reviewed journal articles, 2 books and is the lead inventor on 38 issued patents (32 US and 6 foreign patents). He is an elected member of the American Heart Association for two councils of Cardiovascular Radiology and Intervention and Cardiovascular Surgery and Anesthesia, and a member of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). His laboratory has been funded by the NIH and many foundations, including the American Heart Association.

rafael demarco

Rafael Demarco, PhD
Postdoctoral researcher at the JonesLab at the University of California, San Francisco. Finalist of the Boyer-Parvin Postdoctoral Award and recipient of the Eli & Edythe Broad Center of Regenerative Medicine & Stem Cell Research Training Grant. Rafael is interested in the intersection between stem cell behavior and mitochondrial metabolism. In particular, his work focuses on understanding whether changes in metabolism can affect stem cell maintenance and activity. Rafael is originally from Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and his goal also within research is to foster and encourage underrepresented groups to participate in STEM research.

sitaram emani

Sitaram Emani, MD

Associate Professor, Department of Cardiac Surgery, Surgical Director of the Adult Congenital Heart Program, Director of the Complex Biventricular Repair Program at Harvard Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Founder of CellVie. His work has been based on therapeutic mitochondrial transplantation (TMT) in order to recover the myocardium after cardiogenic shock. He is the principal investigator in the ongoing clinical trial at Boston Children's Hospital, and was the first to employ TMT clinically.


Alexander G Rabchevsky, PhD

Professor of Physiology and part of the Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Center (SCoBIRC) at the University of Kentucky. Board member of the No Barriers USA His lab has developed state-of-the-art telemetric monitoring of cardiophysiology before and after spinal cord injury (SCI) to inform that blockade of excitatory neurotransmission with neuropathic analgesics (i.e. gabapentinoids). His work continues to employ refined research tools along with new advances in viral vectors to understand the influences of maladaptive intraspinal plasticity on the incidence and/or severity of AD. In another line of research, he is employing novel anti-sense oligonucleotides to attenuate muscle spasticity in a model of chronic SCI. The goal of these studies is to inject oligonucleotides to inactivate constitutively active 5HT2C receptors in the injured spinal cord that are thought to underlie muscle spasticity using rat models.

alain thierry

Alain Thierry, MD

Principal Investigator of the Biomarkers for Precision Oncology team at the Cancer Research Institute of the University of Montpellier, Campus Val d'Aurelle. The objective of his team is to discover and use predictive and prognostic biomarkers for personalized medicine in digestive oncology. The team is composed of researchers developing fundamental and translational projects and clinicians involved in integrative and clinically relevant research. Our project integrates interdisciplinary skills including fundamental research on signaling pathways, molecular biology, tumor microenvironment studies, imaging biomarker research, biostatistics and clinical research. These skills enable the development of innovative translational research programs on digestive cancers. We are particularly interested in the analysis of circulating cell-free DNA and microRNA, protein dimerization profiles, the oncogenic Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway and novel predictive medical imaging markers. An additional asset is the integration of methodological research in biostatistics for biomarker evaluation. Particular effort is devoted to the expression of new molecular and genetic markers in liquid and solid biopsies of human tumors and tissues. In accordance with the research program focused on colorectal cancer and carried out in close collaboration with the Integrated Cancer Research Center "SIRIC Montpellier Cancer", we are committed to establish new links between basic research and clinical needs, in order to significantly improve medical practices related to digestive cancers.


Time Speaker
10h00-10h30 Opening
Intro Event
Andrés Caicedo, PhD / Maroun Khoury, PhD / Jayme Nunes de Souza Filho, MSc

Welcome and latest advances of Mitochondria as a therapeutic agent, science behind all the development
Keshav Singh, PhD

Oral Presentations
10h30-10h50 James D. McCully, PhD
Boston Children’s Hospital
Harvard Medical School Teaching Hospital
10h50-11h10 Andrés Caicedo, PhD
Escuela de Medicina, USFQ
Dragon BioMed
Universidad San Francisco de Quito
11h10-11h30 Patricia Luz, PhD
Facultad de Medicina
Cells for Cells
Los Andes University, Chile
11h30-11h40 Video Pause, Promo Thermo
11h40-12h00 Arash Kheradvar, MD, PhD
Department of Biomedical Engineering
University of California, Irvine
12h00-12h20 Rafael Demarco, PhD
Department of Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology (MCDB)
12h20-12h30 Video Pause, Promo Thermo/Dragon BioMed
12h30-12h50 Sitaram Emani, MD
Boston Children’s Hospital
Harvard Medical School Teaching Hospital
12h50-13h10 Alexander G Rabchevsky, PhD
Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Center
University of Kentucky
13h10-13h30 Alain Thierry, MD
Institut de Recherche en Cancerologie de Montpellier
Montpellier University
13h30-13h50 Maroun Khoury, PhD
Facultad de Medicina
Cells for Cells
Los Andes University, Chile
13h50-14h20 Round Table/Clossing Remarks and Special Issue
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