Thursday, August 18, 2022

MAGISNAT: the Atlanta Tech Park-Based Spin-off Studying the Mediterranean Diet and Eating Disorders

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MAGISNAT (https://magisnat.com/), hosted at Atlanta Tech Park (Peachtree Corners, GA), is a spin-off dedicated to researching through genomics, microbiomics, and metabolomics approaches the beneficial role played in health by polyphenols from plants typically employed in the Mediterranean diet. Its goal is to develop and market polyphenol concentrates that can bring the benefits of the Mediterranean diet to everybody.

This project is the brainchild of Dr Matteo Bertelli, who was inspired by a historical figure of the last century, Achille Bertelli, who moved to San Francisco in order to develop his own chemical-pharmaceutical company and then became an expert in the field, specializing in the extraction of natural molecules and production of supplements (video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGEMhB18Q6o).

The main mission of this new reality is to bring people to develop healthier eating habits by following the principles of the Mediterranean diet, to practice physical activity and, if necessary, to take dietary supplements based on polyphenols from olive tree or other typical Mediterranean plants to make up for some dietary deficiencies.

Many studies have shown that certain foods, such as olives (doi: 10.1096/fj.09-148452), can “talk to our genes,” thus preventing and/or improving certain diseases (doi: 10.1002/biof.1318): e.g., neurodegenerative diseases (doi: 10.3390/molecules20034655). In addition, it has been studied that, for example, olive oil antioxidant properties act on DNA and modify the expression of some genes (doi: 10.1146/annurev-pharmtox-011112-140320), with positive consequences on the body.

After years of collaborations between some American professors and some young Italian researchers, thanks in part to the first patent (number: WO2022079498A1), already accepted, and two other filed patents, it was decided to create the new spin-off called MAGISNAT at Atlanta Tech Park.

Prof. Stephen T. Connelly, University of California, known for his studies on the role of polyphenols from olive tree in reducing oral bacterial load (sci. art. doi: 10.26355/eurrev_202112_27336); Prof. Peng Jin, Emory University in Atlanta, who focused on the importance of polyphenols from olive tree in preventing the neurodegenerative disease FXTAS; and Prof. Karen L. Herbst, Department of Medicine of the University of Arizona, who is focusing on the study of lipoedema (sci. art. doi: 10.3390/ijms21176264), are all participating in the MAGISNAT project.

On the other hand, among the Italian professors who are involved in the birth of MAGISNAT it is essential to mention: Prof. Benedetto Falsini; Prof. Amerigo Iaconelli, an expert on the Mediterranean Diet; Prof. Sandro Michelini (sci. art. doi: 10.26355/eurrev_202112_27331); and Prof. Pietro Chiurazzi.

The MAGISNAT project is the brainchild of Dr. Matteo Bertelli, who, after publishing several papers on natural molecules (video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F4Ef-DsdPzc) with most of the professors currently involved in the project and after the first patents, decided to start this entrepreneurship.

With this new spin-off, Dr. Matteo Bertelli hopes to achieve the same success reached by Achille Bertelli over a century ago with his company in San Francisco.

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