Founded in 2015, BioAge Labs uses AI-based drug discovery and systems biology to target the pathways that affect aging. BioAge’s drug discovery platform is longitudinal in nature, and it consists of the personal medical records and eventual longevity outcomes of a large number of human beings in order to create a detailed map of how we age, including proteins, metabolic issues, and genetic transcription. BioAge believes that directly intervening in the processes of aging is the best path forward for dealing with age-related diseases and increasing healthspan among older people.
BioAge is currently researching immune system issues and unexplained anemia caused by aging, and one of the compounds that BioAge’s drug discovery platform has identified is hypoxia-induced factor (HIF), which BioAge has identified as being associated with physical and cognitive abilities along with extended lifespan, as it affects blood cell production, the remodeling of vasculature, and how we metabolize glucose. In order to increase systemic HIF, BioAge has developed BGE-117, a drug that inhibits an enzyme responsible for breaking down this factor.
BioAge is currently putting together a Phase 2a trial of BGE-117 for unexplained anemia of aging in people over 65. This trial follows a previous 69-patient trial for chronic kidney disease, in which BGE-117 was found to be safe and well-tolerated. 80 patients at 15 different Australian sites will receive BGE-117, while another 80 will receive a placebo every day for 12 weeks. This trial will focus on hemoglobin levels and patient-reported FACIT-F scores, which refer to the effects of fatigue on their daily lives. BioAge will collect muscle aging and exploratory aging biomarkers alongside the usual data relating to safety, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics.
BioAge is also developing BGE-175, which is designed to aid patients against respiratory issues, including but not limited to COVID-19. This compound targets the prostaglandin pathway in order to inhibit the PGD2 DP1 receptor, thereby limiting neutrophil migration and boosting the function of natural killer and dendritic cells, which BioAge states helps to combat immune aging and protect against infectious diseases.
At the 39th Annual J. P. Morgan Healthcare Conference on July 12, 2021, Dr. Kristen Fortney, CEO of BioAge Labs, gave a presentation on her company’s goals, funding, and approach. She discussed the strategy of targeting indications that work against aging in general in the long term but are targeted against more immediately treatable conditions in the short term; BGE-117 is one of these drugs, as is BGE-175. She further discussed how her company uses its biobank to go from initial stages of development to human clinical trials.
On the financial front, BioAge has raised more than a hundred million dollars in funding, including an initial Series A round of $10.9 million dollars along with later rounds of $23 million and $90 million from investors eager to combat age-related diseases.
Ultimately, BioAge Labs is a company that uses human data to develop treatments for humans, and its biobank system appears to be a powerful innovation towards the development of therapies that directly affect the processes of aging.