Integrated Health Systems, in partnership with BioViva, originally began looking into the Klotho protein because of its potential in regenerating entire kidneys, a miraculous enough possibility on its own. Since then, the literature on this protein has evolved, and it becomes clear that Klotho has a myriad of roles in maintaining balance within the body’s various microenvironments and systems (Ullah & Sun, 2018). Klotho plays an important role such as treating and possibly preventing cancer, dementia, including Alzheimer’s, atherosclerosis, heart disease, and cardiovascular disease, not to mention its more general potential in helping people live longer, healthier lives (Bi, Yang, Zhang, & Zhao, 2020) (Chen et al., 2018) (Dubal & Yokoyama, 2020) (Sahu et al., 2018).
As if this were not impressive enough, scientists also have strong reason to believe that the Klotho protein has a role to play as an intelligence enhancer. There is strong evidence that the natural occurrence of Klotho within the general population is associated with better cognitive ability.
While the full benefits to human cognition are not yet certain, the potential for enhancement has been deemed by researchers as more clinically significant than anything thought to have similar effects. Researchers have become confident enough that Klotho has been referenced as an “age-extending” and “cognition-enhancing protein” within their work (Abraham, Mullen, Tucker-Zhou, Chen, & Zeldich, 2016) (Chen, Zeldich, Li, Yuste, & Abraham, 2018). In animal studies, the Klotho protein has been associated with dramatic increases in intelligence. Just hours after taking it, subjects have seen significant increases in cognitive function. Where Klotho occurs in the general population it is also associated with increased intelligence, more so than any other single gene (Dubal et al., 2015).
Imagine a world where even some of these results can be transferred to humans, where everyone could become significantly more intelligent with a single treatment. This alone gives the Klotho protein more potential value than almost any medical treatment or drug currently on the market. Even if it only does a fraction of what it does in animal studies for human intelligence, it could easily be worth trillions for that aspect alone.
If we can use the Klotho protein to bring increase intelligence for people at any point on the bell curve, it could save fortunes for a number of national economies. Whether that means addressing people on the low end to enable them to contribute to the work force, enhancing people in the average range to become sharper, or even using it to turn highly intelligent individuals into geniuses.
Even if with all the excitement, the Klotho protein has fewer applications in intelligence than currently hoped for, the world is just one gene away from new treatments just as radical as the ones being considered now. Gene-therapy is still considered by most to be on the periphery, but those who understand its importance now will reap its rewards in more ways than one.
These are treatments which are poised to radically change society in a way which can only be compared to penicillin in the medical world. As with most advancements, nations and other economic entities can be slow to realize the full value of new innovations, but as far as gene-therapy is concerned, the world is sitting on a gold mine and Klotho is just one example.
While individual treatments for Klotho are expensive, since treatment cost decreases with scale, all gene-therapies have potential as mass market products. The companies which take advantage of this can reap rewards many times the investment, especially since most of the technological groundwork has already been completed. Integrated Health Systems (IHS) is one such company which is a pioneer now, but IHS already has its name etched in history in the same way companies like Apple or Adobe.
What will Klotho be worth when BioViva, or an organization like it, packages it into a single therapy, along with all the others meant to vastly rid humanity of disease and extend human health span?
Abraham, C., Mullen, P., Tucker-Zhou, T., Chen, C., & Zeldich, E. (2016). Klotho Isa Neuroprotective and Cognition-Enhancing Protein.
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Bi, X., Yang, K., Zhang, B., & Zhao, J. (2020). The Protective Role of Klotho inCKD-Associated Cardiovascular Disease. Kidney Diseases, 1-12.doi:10.1159/000509369
Chen, B., Liang, Y., Chen, L., Wei, Y., Li, Y., Zhao, W., & Wu, J. (2018). Overexpression ofKlotho Inhibits HELF Fibroblasts SASP-related Protumoral Effects on Non-small Cell Lung Cancer Cells. Journal of Cancer, 9(7), 1248-1258.
Chen, C., Zeldich, E., Li, Y., Yuste, A., & Abraham, C. R. (2018). Activation of the Anti-Aging and Cognition-Enhancing Gene Klotho by CRISPR-dCas9 Transcriptional Effector Complex. Journal of Molecular Neuroscience, 64(2), 175-184. doi:10.1007/s12031-017-1011-0
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Sahu, A., Mamiya, H., Shinde, S. N., Cheikhi, A., Winter, L. L., Vo, N. V., . . . Ambrosio, F. (2018). Age-related declines in α-Klotho drive progenitor cell mitochondrial dysfunction and impaired muscle regeneration. Nature Communications, 9(1). doi:10.1038/s41467-018-07253-3
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