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Press release:

The Jane and Aatos Erkko Foundation supports research into mitochondrial disease.

The Jane and Aatos Erkko Foundation has granted a Helsinki-based group of mitochondrial researchers five-year funding totalling EUR 1.62 million for research into diseases of energy metabolism in children. Under the molecular neurology research programme of Biomedicum Helsinki, the centre for medical research and training at the University of Helsinki, the research teams of Professor Anu Wartiovaara, pediatric neurologist Tiina Tyni, PhD, and Academy Research Fellow Brendan Battersby focus on the reasons behind serious diseases of energy metabolism in children.

Disturbed energy metabolism caused by dysfunction in cellular mitochondria is the most common cause of children’s inherited multisystem disorders. The research project supported by the Jane and Aatos Erkko Foundation covers areas including the molecular basis of diseases of the central nervous system and cardiomyopathy. The aim is also to generate knowledge of the mechanisms causing mitochondrial disease in different tissue types and disease inheritance.

This considerable funding contribution by the Jane and Aatos Erkko Foundation allows the research consortium to develop diagnostics for new diseases with previously unknown causes and models that will enable in-depth research into disease mechanisms. Today there are very few therapy options available for patients with mitochondrial disorders, and research into the molecular mechanisms behind these disorders will help determine whether therapies can be created for individual types of dysfunction.