First International Congress on Ergothioneine Reveals Newly Rediscovered Antioxidant, Likely “Essential to Human Life”

Oxis International’s Debut Gathering of Leading Researchers in Anti-Aging Medicine Discusses Merits of the Unparalleled Antioxidant, Ergothioneine

Oxis International Science Advisory Board members celebrate Dr. Bruce Ames' Lifetime Achievement Award at the First International Congress on Ergothioneine. Pictured left to right: Dr. Okezie Aruoma; Bernie Landes, President, Oxis Int'l; Dr. Bruce Ames; Dr. John Repine; Dr. L. Stephen Coles. (Photo: Business Wire)

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif.--()--An impressive “who’s who” in anti-aging medicine and research from around the world gathered for the first time this past weekend to discuss the myriad benefits of L-ergothioneine, a newly rediscovered antioxidant that is 6,000 times more potent than Vitamin E. Oxis International () provided an educational grant in support of the First International Congress on Ergothioneine, which featured lively discussion and sharing of information on oxidative stress, healthy aging and chronic disease prevention and management. Attendees agreed that the key “takeaway” from the conference was that ergothioneine may well be a previously unidentified nutrient essential to human life, a completely unique substance that not only has extraordinary antioxidant activity but has also been shown to enhance and extend the potency of other antioxidants.

Experts are embracing the potential of this new discovery.

  • Dr. Okezie Aruoma, M.B.A., Ph.D., D.Sc., Touro College of Pharmacy, New York and President of Oxis Advisory Board, says, “The uniqueness of ergothioneine in the human body may not only reside in its ability to protect organs against age-dependent degeneration due to chronic inflammation, but also increase the body’s availability of glutathione, (the first line antioxidant defense in vivo,) while conserving Vitamin E, which is a critical process in detoxification.”
  • Dr. L. Stephen Coles, M.D. Ph.D., UCLA Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, member of Oxis’ “Blue Ribbon” Science Advisory Board, says that the potential for ergothioneine’s impact on human health is exciting. “This small amino acid (containing a sulfur atom) is a critical molecule in many different biochemical pathways within the cell. It serves to protect the tissues against dangerous free radicals. Further, the human body has a unique gene that synthesizes a carrier protein whose role is to enable ergothioneine to be transported into the cells.”
  • Dr. Bruce Ames, Ph.D., Children’s Hospital, Oakland Research Institute, member of the National Academy of Sciences and inventor of the “Ames Test,” states, “Ergothioneine is an old compound that new research is suggesting may be an unappreciated vitamin. It is specifically transported into the body and humans do not make it.” Dr. Ames was presented with a special “Achievement Award” at the conference, in recognition of a lifetime of extraordinary achievements in antioxidants and anti-aging research.
  • Dr John Repine, M.D., Web Waring Institute, University of Colorado, also a member of Oxis’ Advisory Board, was awarded a $1.34M grant from the US Department of Defense that is, in part, providing funding to continue his research efforts on the potential use of L-ergothioneine as a therapeutic intervention for Acute Lung Injury/Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ALI/ARDS,) severe lung diseases that can be fatal in combat veterans and other trauma patients.

Discovered by a French scientist in 1909, ergothioneine has been dormant for over 100 years until now. Leading scientists now believe it is a nutrient essential to human life, but, unlike any other compound, it cannot be made by the human body or by plants and has a gene (SLC22A4) and transporter (ETT) dedicated only to it. It is an amino acid with a unique structure naturally produced by microorganisms that exist in soil, and only found in very small quantities in certain exotic mushrooms, oat bran, beans and a few other foods. Oxis International, a leading biotechnology company, owns the patent to manufacture pure l-ergothioneine. Oxis has now begun to market the ingredient in consumer products, combining ergothioneine with other compounds to create products for joint health and aging support, among others.

“L-ergothioneine may be the most important nutritional breakthrough in years,” says Bernie Landes, President of Oxis International. “It is perhaps the most powerful and effective antioxidant ever, with unparalleled potential benefits for cognitive function, eye health, immune modulation, lung health, reproductive health, skin health and overall wellness at all stages of the aging process.”

About OXIS International, Inc.

OXIS International, Inc. is a long-established, but recently revitalized biotechnology Company developing multiple proprietary, natural substance-based products focused on oxidative stress and inflammation, which are associated with the negative effects of free radicals and reactive oxygen species (ROS). The Company’s consumer product portfolio is quickly expanding to include dietary supplements, functional foods and beverages, skin care and other personal care products, and animal health products. Specifically, Oxis is emphasizing the unique properties of L-Ergothioneine (ERGO), a highly potent, patent-protected and versatile antioxidant. The Company recently signed a strategic financing agreement with its primary product development and manufacturing partner, Gemini Pharmaceuticals, launched its first product, ErgoFlex, for joint pain relief and overall joint health and announced a joint venture with engage:BDR for a global leader in online sales and marketing.

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Essenza Communications, Inc. for OXIS International
Pamela Stewart, 303-570-1678

Release Summary

Oxis International's debut of the First International Congress on Ergothioneine featured top anti-aging scientists from around the world to discuss super antioxidant benefits of ergothioneine.


Essenza Communications, Inc. for OXIS International
Pamela Stewart, 303-570-1678