Yissum - Research Development Company of the Hebrew University

Novel Treatment to Prevent Lipotoxicity in the Liver

Posted by Yissum - Research Development Company of the Hebrew UniversityResponsive · Innovative Products and Technologies · Israel

Summary of the technology

Novel Treatment to Prevent Lipotoxicity in the Liver
Project ID : 6-2018-5675

Description of the technology


Life Sciences ,pharma


Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, NAFLD, Liver Toxicity, metabolic diseases,

Current development stage

General list: TRL3 Experimental proof of concept

Partnership Opportunity

Research and Option


Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and associated diseases Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), Cirrhosis, and Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cost the US economy an estimated at $103 billion per year. Lipotoxicity is a major reason for NAFLD progression.

Our Innovation

To date, there has not been any approved anti-lipotoxic treatment of NAFLD. We discovered that the effect of a combination of specific small soluble compounds synergistically activates defense pathways in hepatocytes against lipotoxicity.


According to our preliminary data, such an approach may lead to novel drug therapy for liver metabolic diseases. So far we have demonstrated a synergistic activation of large number of defense genes. Preliminary in vitro results show that liver cells exposed to a high level of saturated fatty acids that are treated with the proprietary combination of specific small compounds prevent cell death when compared to untreated cells, of which an average 25% of the cells die.


There is no doubt that there is a crucial need to develop a drug that directly addresses the toxicity of saturated fatty acids accumulating in the liver cells and provides a protective mechanism for these cells.

The researcher is seeking research funding for beginning in vivo experiments to test the protective treatment in mice models fed with high fat diets. Additionally the researcher wishes chemically to conjugate small compounds for injection and or oral administration.

This treatment will not only target NAFLD and associated diseases, but also meet an unmet need for drug development for metabolic diseases like atherosclerosis, congestive heart failure beta-cell dysfunction, kidney diseases, and diabetes.

Project manager

Amichai Baron
VP, Head of Business Development, Agritech & Envir

Project researchers

Oren Tirosh
HUJI, Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences
Biochemistry, Food Science and Nutrition

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About Yissum - Research Development Company of the Hebrew University

Technology Transfer Office from Israel

Yissum Research Development Company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Ltd. Founded in 1964 to protect and commercialize the Hebrew University’s intellectual property. Ranked among the top technology transfer companies, Yissum has registered over 8,900 patents covering 2,500 inventions; has licensed out 800 technologies and has spun-off 90 companies. Products that are based on Hebrew University technologies and were commercialized by Yissum generate today over $2 Billion in annual sales.

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