Hydrogel Platform Company AmacaThera Raises $3.6 Million In Seed Funding

By Dan Anderson ● October 8, 2019
  • AmacaThera, a hydrogel platform for sustained drug release, announced recently that it raised $3.6 million in seed funding

AmacaThera — a hydrogel platform for sustained drug release — announced recently that it closed US$3.6 million in seed funding. The first close of this round was led by Sprout BioVentures/Viva Biotech with participation from Grey Sky Venture Partners. And the round was recently completed with an investment from Toronto-based Lumira Ventures.

“We are thrilled to have the Lumira team as part of our investor group and look forward to working closely with them and our other investors in executing the company’s business plan,” said Dr. Molly Shoichet, Ph.D., Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of AmacaThera.

AmacaThera’s propriety hydrogel technology can be combined with therapeutic agents to form a product — which can be injected into a tissue to localize the therapeutics to the injection.

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“We have followed the evolution of the AmacaThera story for some time and, as a result, we had the opportunity to work closely with Molly, Mike and the rest of the team before our investment. That relationship, and the insights we gained gave us confidence in their technology, development strategy and the opportunity to develop a novel non-opioid-based product for the treatment of post-surgical pain,” added Peter van der Velden, Managing General Partner at Lumira Ventures — who is joining AmacaThera’s Board of Directors.

AmacaThera has a goal of using its proprietary technology to develop injectable and biocompatible hydrogels that is able to enhance the delivery, targeting, and release of a diverse range of therapeutic agents. The company’s first product AMT-143 is being developed to improve post-operative pain control thereby reducing or eliminating opioid use following surgery. And it is aimed at sustained post-operative pain relief to reduce the need for opioids and to provide superior pain relief.

“We are thankful for the support of our investors. This capital will allow us to advance our drug delivery platform technology into clinical trials in 2020,” explained Mike Cooke, AmacaThera Co-Founder and CEO.

AmacaThera was incubated in Dr. Shoichet’s laboratory with assistance from numerous accelerators, including the Creative Destruction Lab at the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto Early Stage Technology, the Ontario Biosciences Innovation Organization (OBIO), TIAP (formerly MaRS Innovation), and the U of T Innovations & Partnership Office. And AmacaThera is currently a resident company at the Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JLABS incubator.