Enzymes within the aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) superfamily perform critical detoxification functions for the cell and human body. ALDH enzymes are present in cytosol, mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum and nucleus, with broad tissue distribution and play important roles in embryogenesis and development, oxidative stress, neurotransmission, and cancer. There are 19 aldehyde dehydrogenase genes/isozymes in the human genome. Key isozymes include ALDH1A1, ALDH1A2, ALDH1A3, ALDH2 and ALDH3A1.
ALDH2, a mitochondrial enzyme that metabolizes toxic endogenous and exogenous aldehydes, is the primary target for ALDEA’s novel therapies. Specifically, ALDH2 catalyzes conversion of a number of harmful aldehydes to non-toxic metabolites.