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Astaxanthin compound found to switch on the FOX03 'longevity gene' in mice

March 28, 2017

The University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of Medicine ("JABSOM") and Cardax, Inc. ("Cardax") (OTCQB:CDXI), a Honolulu based life sciences company, have jointly announced the results of an animal study evaluating the effectiveness of a compound that holds promise in anti-aging therapy.

The Astaxanthin compound CDX-085 (developed by Cardax) showed the ability to significantly increase the expression of the FOXO3 gene, which plays a proven role in longevity.

"All of us have the FOXO3 gene, which protects against aging in humans," said Dr. Bradley Willcox, MD, Professor and Director of Research at the Department of Geriatric Medicine, JABSOM, and Principal Investigator of the National Institutes of Health-funded Kuakini Hawaii Lifespan and Healthspan Studies. "But about one in three persons carry a version of the FOXO3 gene that is associated with longevity. By activating the FOXO3 gene common in all humans, we can make it act like the "longevity" version. Through this research, we have shown that Astaxanthin "activates" the FOXO3 gene," said Willcox.

"This preliminary study was the first of its kind to test the potential of Astaxanthin to activate the FOXO3 gene in mammals," said Dr. Richard Allsopp, PhD, Associate Professor, and researcher with the JABSOM Institute of Biogenesis Research.

In the study, mice were fed either normal food or food containing a low or high dose of the Astaxanthin compound CDX-085 provided by Cardax. The animals that were fed the higher amount of the Astaxanthin compound experienced a significant increase in the activation of the FOXO3 gene in their heart tissue.

"We found a nearly 90% increase in the activation of the FOXO3 "Longevity Gene" in the mice fed the higher dose of the Astaxanthin compound CDX-085," said Dr. Allsopp.

"This groundbreaking University of Hawaii research further supports the critical role of Astaxanthin in health and why the healthcare community is embracing its use," said David G. Watumull, Cardax CEO. "We look forward to further confirmation in human clinical trials of Astaxanthin's role in aging."

"We are extremely proud of our collaborative efforts with Cardax on this very promising research that may help mitigate the effects of aging in humans," said Vassilis L. Syrmos, Vice President of Research at the University of Hawaii. "This is a great example of what the Hawaii Innovation Initiative is all about -- when the private sector and government join forces to build a thriving innovation, research, education and job training enterprise to help diversify the state's economy."
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Link to downloadable video b-roll:

https://spaces.hightail.com/space/9LXS7

Link to downloadable photos from the Allsopp Lab: https://www.flickr.com/photos/uhmed/albums/72157678596687483/with/33686721005/

About Astaxanthin and CDX-085

Astaxanthin is a naturally occurring compound found in seafood such as shrimp, lobster, and salmon, and is typically sourced from algae, krill, or synthesis. Multiple animal studies have demonstrated that Astaxanthin reduces inflammation, heart and liver damage, cholesterol levels, and risk of stroke. In humans, Astaxanthin also has been shown to lower inflammation and triglycerides.

Astaxanthin is the active ingredient in CDX-085, Cardax's patented second generation compound. "This proprietary compound, like our first generation product ZanthoSyn, delivers Astaxanthin to the blood stream with superior absorption and purity, but in a more concentrated form, allowing higher doses per capsule and improved dosing convenience," said Watumull. In animal study results published in peer-reviewed papers, CDX-085 statistically significantly lowered triglycerides by 72% as well as atherosclerosis and blood clots.

About the FOXO3 "Longevity Gene"

Researchers with the Kuakini Hawaii Lifespan Study, sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and Kuakini Medical Center, discovered that for those who have a certain gene (the FOXO3 "G" genotype) there is "extra protection" against the risk of death as you get older, compared to average persons. Using data from the Kuakini Hawaii Lifespan Study, a substudy of the 50-year Kuakini Honolulu Heart Program (Kuakini HHP), and the National Institute on Aging's Health, Aging and Body Composition (Health ABC) study as a replication cohort, researchers found that people with this FOXO3 gene have an impressive 10% reduced risk of dying overall and a 26% reduced risk of death from coronary heart disease over a 17 year period. Data are based on a 17-year prospective cohort study of 3,584 older American men of Japanese ancestry from the Kuakini HHP cohort study and a 17-year prospective replication study of 1,595 white and 1,056 African-American elderly individuals from the Health ABC cohort.

About Cardax

Cardax devotes substantially all of its efforts to developing and commercializing safe anti-inflammatory dietary supplements and drugs. Cardax is initially focusing on astaxanthin, which is a powerful and safe naturally occurring anti-inflammatory without the side effects of currently marketed anti-inflammatories. The safety and efficacy of Cardax's products have not been directly evaluated in clinical trials or confirmed by the FDA. About the University of Hawaii Established in 1907 and fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, the University of Hawaii System includes 10 campuses and dozens of educational, training and research centers across the state. As the sole public system of higher education in Hawaii, UH offers an array of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees and community programs. UH enrolls more than 55,000 students from Hawaii, the U.S. mainland and around the world. For more information visit http://www.hawaii.edu.

University of Hawaii Cancer Center

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