Portfolio Companies

Skulachev Ions

Operating Factories

Shareholders in Portfolio Company 
RUSNANO, private shareholders

Industry Sector 
Innovative Nanobiopharmaceutics

Production Location 
Moscow

Investment Started:  2010

Total Budget

2.14  bln rubles
Co-investment by RUSNANO
0.69  bln rubles

The use of innovative medicines based on mitochondrial nanotechnologies in the fight against age-related illnesses. Skulachev ions are an innovative type of antioxidant with a molecular diameter of approximately 1.5 nanometres that can neutralise active forms of oxygen in the mitochondria (cells’ energy generation mechanisms).

The portfolio company responsible for the performance of this project, Mitotech LLC, is developing industrial production of the main substance, SkQ (Skulachev ions), and is also producing ready-to-use medicines: Vizomitin eye drops to treat diseases of the eye (glaucoma, retinal degeneration, inflammatory diseases and cataracts) and medicines to be taken orally (capsules) for the systematic treatment of cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases (arrhythmia, coronary artery disease, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis and osteoporosis).

Skulachev ions are an innovative type of antioxidant with a molecular diameter of approximately 1.5 nanometres that can neutralise active forms of oxygen in the mitochondria (cells’ energy generation mechanisms). Skulachev ions have a unique property: when positively charged they retain their hydrophobic nature. This enables them to pass through the mitochondrial membrane and concentrate inside the mitochondria. Since these molecules can be “delivered” directly into the mitochondria, only a very small amount of powerful antioxidant is required. The size and form of the molecule have been designed so that the antioxidant which they contain is placed—with an accuracy of few nanometres—very close to the points in the mitochondrial membrane that are most vulnerable to damage by active forms of oxygen. That explains why Skulachev ions—compared to other antioxidants—are biologically very active. As a result they have a great potential for use in innovative medicines.