Ohana Biosciences Announces Publication in SCIENCE of Foundational Research Demonstrating Unexpected and Widespread Heterogeneity of Human Sperm
Cambridge, Mass., January 14, 2021 – Ohana Biosciences, a pioneering reproductive health company that created the world’s first sperm biology product platform, today announced the publication of foundational research conducted by Ohana scientists, unveiling a newly discovered mechanism in sperm biology that creates differences in individual human sperm cells. Unlike the scientific dogma that “sperm are functionally equal,” these findings support sperm-level natural selection. The publication underscores that individual sperm can have different impact for the biology of men, pregnant women, and their offspring – highlighting the potential for sperm to serve as the basis of a new frontier in reproductive medicine when applied to areas such as fertility and disease reduction using Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). The data were published online in the journal Science on January 14, 2021, in a paper titled “Widespread haploid-biased gene expression enables sperm-level natural selection.”
“The data published today in Science challenges a central tenet of Mendel’s first law – functional equivalence of gametes – by demonstrating that not all sperm are created equal,” said Amber Salzman, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Ohana. “Our finding has far-reaching impact. Ohana was founded on the belief that dogmatic science has overlooked the influence of sperm in reproductive health, and that sperm cells can be leveraged to improve outcomes across reproduction, pregnancy health, birth outcomes, and child development. Our industry-first sperm biology platform is based on these previously undiscovered insights, and we are now on the cusp of leveraging these into transformative reproductive health products across two broad product franchises: Reproductive Outcomes and Non-hormonal Contraception.”
Ohana’s first product opportunity from its platform is SPERTILITY™, an ex vivo sperm cell treatment to improve outcomes for people using ART, such as In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF). Initial data from SPRING (SPeRtility, IVF Next Generation), Ohana’s ongoing first-in-human clinical trial of SPERTILITY, are expected in the first quarter of 2021. Ohana is also developing a franchise of non-hormonal, antibody-based contraception for men and women, which includes several programs currently in preclinical development.
About Ohana Biosciences
At Ohana Biosciences, we work on pioneering reproductive health advances through our industry-first platform of sperm-based treatments. We began with a vision to understand the power of a single sperm cell: influencing conception, birth outcomes, and health of pregnant women and children. Our leading scientific understanding of sperm biology has enabled us to develop sperm-based products that could help all people to create the healthy family they dream of – when they are ready. By advancing our research in fertility treatments, new treatments to reduce pregnancy complications, disease transmission, and developmental disorders, and enabling non-hormonal contraception, we hope to lead the revolution in reproductive health and offer life-changing options for all people. We anchor our aspirations in our name Ohana, which means “the family you choose” in Hawaiian. Ohana was founded in 2016 by Flagship Pioneering and is based in Cambridge, Mass. For more information, please visit www.OhanaBio.com.
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