Khondrion, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company discovering and developing therapies targeting mitochondrial disease, today announces that the Company has joined a new consortium of universities, academic hospitals and industrial partners looking to understand the impact of metabolomic processes on the severity of COVID-19 in patients. The consortium has received a €1 million grant from Top Sector Life Sciences & Health (Health~Holland).

The consortium is focused on using metabolomics, the study of the unique chemical fingerprints that specific metabolomic processes leave in the human body, to better understand COVID-19. The consortium will be investigating the metabolic fingerprints of 5,000 to 7,000 patients with COVID-19 to identify markers that could predict the severity of symptoms in new patients who contract the virus. With the new collaboration, the consortium partners hope to improve care for intensive care patients, the elderly and at-risk groups as well as testing the effects of existing and new drugs and even optimising patients’ diets and dietary supplements.

The consortium’s activities will include the investigation of Khondrion’s lead asset, sonlicromanol, following the Company’s scientific hypothesis published earlier this year by Preprints proposing that it may have potential as a repurposed treatment for the prostaglandin E2 (PGE2)-driven inflammatory consequences underlying severe COVID-19 disease.

Prof. Dr. Jan Smeitink, Chief Executive Officer at Khondrion, said: “We are delighted to be involved in this unique project, which has the potential to provide a more thorough understanding of COVID-19, and that we hope will help to improve care for the most vulnerable patients. We are also pleased that through this project, the potential of sonlicromanol in COVID-19, born out of a wealth of data on its mode of action, will be further investigated. This year the healthcare industry has shown itself to be resilient, collaborative and committed, and this consortium is no different. We look forward to working with our new partners to progress this research for the benefit of patients worldwide.”

“It’s problematic that we don’t know why patients react so differently to the virus and that we can’t predict this,” says Thomas Hankemeier, professor Analytical biosciences at Leiden University and leader of the consortium. “We want to change that, so that we can provide more effective care.”

This prestigious project is a collaboration of expert partners in this field, joined together by Thomas Hankemeier, professor Analytical biosciences at Leiden University and leader of the consortium, and consists of:

The collaboration project is co-funded by the PPP Allowance made available by Health~Holland, Top Sector Life Sciences & Health, to stimulate public-private partnerships. The Dutch Life Sciences & Health (LSH) sector is one of nine “top sectors” in the Netherlands. The top sectors are designated by the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy and are selected on their ability to contribute substantially to global societal challenges.