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Mitochondrial Uncoupler Prodrug of 2,4-Dinitrophenol, MP201, Prevents Neuronal Damage and Preserves Vision in Experimental Optic Neuritis

Optic neuritis is an inflammatory demyelinating disease of the optic nerve often associated with multiple sclerosis (MS) [1]. Optic neuritis may lead to complete or partial loss of vision in one or both eyes [2]. In 15%–20% of people who eventually develop MS, optic neuritis is their first symptom [3]. Current therapies used for optic neuritis, intravenous corticosteroids, show no benefit on final visual recovery, with up to 60% of patients failing to return to normal visual function, even though steroids have an effect in hastening acute visual recovery, decreasing inflammation, and reducing pain on eye movement associated with optic neuritis [1, 4].

About Mitochon Pharmaceuticals
Mitochon was founded in 2014 with the mission to develop treatments for insidious diseases through the modulation of mitochondrial physiology, with applications to neurodegeneration, neuromuscular, and developmental diseases. Mitochon’s lead programs, MP101 and MP201, specifically harnesses the power of the mitochondria to provide broad neural protection. These compounds elicit mild increases in energy expenditure that result in strengthening cellular survival—similar to the positive effects seen with fasting and exercise. These compounds also induce an important neurotrophin, Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF), involved in cognition and neural growth. Mitochon is supported by Ben Franklin Technology Partners Southeastern PA, an initiative of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development funded by the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority.