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Mitochondria and Cell Research - the Oroboros Ecosystem

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The Oroboros Ecosystem

Oroboros Ecosystem
The Oroboros Ecosystem connects our customers with the Oroboros science team and our Partners in the Oroboros Ecosystem: We have been collaborating since 2001 with WGT-Elektronik GmbH & Co KG in the development and production of the O2k; with Lukas Gradl (SSN) in software development from DatLab 3 to DatLab 7, and since 2017 with Markus Haider in the development of DatLab 8.
On our Bioblast website, including MitoPedia and O2k-Open Support pages, a wealth of information and scientific knowledge is available, ranging from O2k-Procedures to O2k-Publications. Our aim is to provide more than just the physical means to conduct mitochondrial research. By offering an open resource in addition to making ourselves available for excellent customer and technical support, we empower our customers to design, implement and interpret meaningful experiments. Further benefiting our customers, we organize international O2k-Workshops on a regular basis, allowing for hands-on practical training provided by our experts. Our open-access preprint server, MitoFit Preprint Archives, encourages and supports the sharing of knowledge in the field. This plays into our strong belief in having an open source platform for our customers and network.
Responding to the needs of biomedical research and expanding the market leadership of Oroboros Instruments worldwide, the Oroboros Ecosystem has developed in a sequence that is presented here from the future to the past:

The future is now

Oriented towards the Oroboros Ecosystem including innovation, marketing and project management, Oroboros received its so far largest grant (EU H2020 SME NextGen-O2k) with €1.7 mill for two years. The all-in-one O2k-concept is extended by additional modules in the NextGen-O2k. These enable O2k applications in photosynthesis and environmental technology, and thus add a new market segment to the Oroboros Ecosystem.

The present: connecting experience and perspectives

Extending our innovation and marketing strategy — and the corporate concept of Oroboros — led to the "Oroboros Ecosystem" project. ‘MitoFit’ as a second K-Regio project and the project 'O2k-Innovation' referred to in the Houska Prize 2012. The synergistic effects of the cooperation between the university and industry as well as the further development of quality management with our partner WGT Elektronik GmbH & Co KG were recognized. MitoFit led to the ISO13485 certification of WGT (2016). Stemming from innovative technical developments, the further scientific and economic success was rooted in the "Oroboros Ecosystem" concept:
Oroboros Ecosystem
  1. Establishment (2013) and expansion of the Oroboros O2k research laboratory, where a scientific elite has been developed to support and advise our customers.
  2. Intensified cooperation with academic institutes and companies in Austria as well as the establishment of international networks, e.g., the H2020 COST Action Project 'MitoEAGLE' chaired by E. Gnaiger, which led to a publication with 620 co-authors.
  3. Innovative business model with worldwide O2k-Network, O2k-Open Support, and Open innovation management; (d) sustainable initiatives, in particular the scientific website Bioblast with MitoPedia, the 'Blue Book' as a textbook of mitochondrial physiology - which leads researchers and students to the O2k technology as a basis for courses at numerous universities - and a mitochondrial preprint server (MitoFit Preprint Archives). The Oroboros Ecosystem combines these building blocks into a mosaic that integrates innovation, research, development and worldwide cooperation in a business-oriented company to form a modern image of mitochondrial respiratory physiology, addressing the most pressing challenges in the modern health care system (see figure). The comprehensive mitochondrial functional analysis to determine vitality is ultimately intended to improve our health system. Did you know about the connection between pandemic obesity, loss of mitochondrial fitness and degenerative diseases? - Body Mass Excess, BME - bme.oroboros.at

A long way from the beginning

Founded in 1994 by Dr. Erich Gnaiger, Oroboros Instruments boasts over 25 years of experience in mitochondrial physiology, making us the expert in mitochondria and cell research. The Tyrolean life science company Oroboros Instruments developed the O2k-FluoRespirometer in cooperation with a network of SMEs and university institutes. This innovation was supported by the K-Regio project 'MitoCom' and was awarded the Houska Prize "Light in the Powerhouse of the Cells" in 2012.


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The Oroboros team of science adventurers, relations ninjas, sales athletes, quality angels

The Oroboros team
Our international team has the skills, knowledge, and creativity to bring innovation and excellence to high-resolution respirometry. By actively participating in research along with hosting international researchers in the specialized Oroboros Laboratories, our scientists understand what is required for excellence in research. They develop tested and trusted O2k instruments and protocols that enable researchers and clinicians to study mitochondrial function in cancer, diabetes, aging, neurodegeneration, exercise physiology and mitochondrial medicine.







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Our Products

O2k-FluoRespirometer
Oroboros O2k represents the unique concept of the modular O2k-system for high-resolution respirometry (HRR). The O2k is applied worldwide in areas ranging from fundamental bioenergetics to the analysis of mitochondrial and metabolic diseases, advancing the rapidly growing field of preventive mitochondrial medicine.
At Oroboros Instruments, we follow the strategy of direct support and distribution with best prices offered worldwide, supported by expert national distributors. Our flagship package is the O2k-FluoRespirometer for mitochondria and cell research. Small amounts of biological samples can be used for bioenergetic and OXPHOS analysis, ranging from isolated mitochondria, permeabilized tissues and permeabilized cells to living cells and tissue slices. The modular O2k-Concept is supported by the specially developed O2k-Software, DatLab 7, with high flexibility for extension by add-on O2k-Modules or economical first steps with the Startup O2k-Respirometer. The high-resolution O2k technology emphasizes quality and scientific output of research in mitochondrial physiology and pathology.


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Mission & Vision

Our Mission
Oroboros Instruments distributes the gold standard O2k-technology high resolution respirometry for mitochondria and cell research - the leading technology for diagnostic evaluation of mitochondrial respiratory function. Our pursuit for continuous innovation has enabled us to launch our next big project, the NextGen-O2k instrument, which on the one hand extends the analytical and diagnostic power of high-resolution respirometry by integration of NADH- and Q-redox and on the other hand expands our business to algal biotechnology and ecology with the photobiology module of the NextGen-O2k, widening our focus from medicine to environment and climate.
Our main mission is to address the acute reproducibility crisis of scientific investigation through precise quality control. In the spirit of Gentle Science and global networking, we recognize the responsibility of the scientific community. To resolve the inflation crisis and ultimately the value-impact crisis of present academic publications, will enable data sharing across projects and institutions in an Open Access database on mitochondrial physiology and pathology. Giving expert user support to our worldwide scientific network and collaborations, we aim to train our future inventors and start-ups. With our focus on corporate social responsibility, we will support key developments in mitochondrial medicine and contribute valuable benefits for our health system through putting pressure on the importance of mitochondrial fitness.
Our Vision
We believe in defining the future of mitochondria and cell research by not only focusing on continuous innovation and user-friendly approaches of our instruments but also by aiming for a consistent nomenclature in mitochondrial physiology. Our vision to be the leading scientific driving force in mitochondrial physiology is guided by our aspiration to equip each biomedical lab world-wide with our instruments for research and diagnostic screening which makes it possible for them to study mitochondrial function in cancer, diabetes, aging, neurodegeneration, exercise physiology and mitochondrial medicine. We strive for optimal harmonization of protocols across research groups and thus support the development of databases of mitochondrial respiratory function in species, tissues, and cells. Clarity of concept and consistency of nomenclature facilitate effective transdisciplinary communication, education, and ultimately further discovery.

Corporate Social Responsibility

At Oroboros Instruments we are committed to not only our work, but also the way we do it. Our culture includes respect and support for our community as well as concern for the environment. Over 25 years of experience in innovation, development and optimization have led to the best quality scientific instruments with minimum running costs. To reduce our environmental impact, we design and produce our devices to be energy efficient and long-lasting. The durability and robustness of our instruments mean less waste. Further waste-reduction practices, such as providing an electronic version of our manuals, are part of our approach to conservation. Our team is dedicated to this ethic and we encourage all our employees to contribute. Like our instruments we strive to continually develop our employees by challenging them and fostering the exchange of knowledge. Our diverse, multicultural and open team shares this philosophy and leads us to our growth. Every employee’s opinion matters, and their breadth of experience helps us continually improve our company and our products.
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Current projects

Started in June 2019 this EU Framework Programme Horizon 2020-funded Phase 2 project has the overall goal to complete the technical and scientific development of the new NextGen-O2k and prepare it for market launch.
Funded by the Austrian Reserach Promotion Funding Agency (FFG), Oroboros will work in collaboration with the Institute of Biochemistry at the University of Innsbruck to connect specific/broad kinase activities to precise metabolic functions (mitochondria) relevant for cell proliferation or survival.
Funded by the European Union Framework Programme Horizon 2020 COST Action since September 2016, the MitoEAGLE network aims to improve our knowledge on mitochondrial function in health and disease related to Evolution, Age, Gender, Lifestyle and Environment through collaboration, standardization and strategic dissemination.
This Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action (ITN) supports eleven PhD fellows to complete research projects between October 2016 and September 2020 in the three critical areas: biomarker discovery, molecular resistance mechanisms and metabolic transformation mechanisms.
During this 4-year Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action (ITN)-funded project, a network of seven different countries will aim to dissect the metabolic remodeling in human cancers, placing the focus on the role of mitochondria and bridging basic research to the improvement/development of therapeutic strategies.
The European project "mtFOIE GRAS", led by the Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology (CNC), University of Coimbra (UC), which aims at promoting the mobility of scientists and technicians between academia, companies and associations, was launched on 14 June 2017 with funding from the Action Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action (RISE).
The key aim of the REMIX Network, funded until September 2020 by the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action (ITN), is to combine the skills of European research groups to provide strategic training of the next generation of scientists through a programme that will progress in the elucidation of the molecular mechanisms and pathways that regulate mitochondrial gene expression.
Starting in November 2019, the EU Framework Programme Horizon 2020 (WIDESPREAD) funded project "FAT4BRAIN" aims to establish a network of excellence focused on the pivotal and common role of fatty acid metabolism in the development of neurological disorders, an issue of utmost biomedical and societal interest.
SPIN is an international, interdisciplinary PhD Program for the training of an elite of young researchers that leads to an EU conform PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) degree in Neuroscience. Graduates receive an advanced professional qualification in teaching and research that is funded by the FWF Austrian Science Fund.


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