Houston Business Journal
Rice University Nanomedicine Co. to Begin Generating Commercial Revenue
Two commercial partners of Houston-based biotech firm Nanospectra Biosciences Inc. plan to launch consumer products in the U.S. in 2019, according to an Oct. 30 release from the company.
Having previously been funded only by private equity investments and grant money, the two products will provide Nanospectra with its first source of commercial revenue since the biotech company was founded in 2001.
David Jorden, CEO of Nanospectra Biosciences, said that the revenue from the commercial products will help the company continue its own research into prostate cancer therapy treatment.
“For the first time in 2019, we will start to have a commercial revenue stream,” Jorden told the Houston Business Journal. “It will not be sufficient in and of itself to sustain the company outside of third-party capital, but it will start us on a path of having diversified revenue streams.”
A project that was spun out of Rice University’s technology transfer program to develop cancer therapy, Nanospectra’s nanomedicine technology is being used by its commercial partners for vastly different reasons. Duluth, Georgia-based dermatology and aesthetics company Sebacia Inc. is using Nanospectra’s nanoparticles to target oil-producing glands in order to combat acne. Sebacia was granted clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to administer its commercial product in September, according to a release from the company. It marks the first time that Nanospectra’s proprietary microparticles have received FDA clearance. Sebacia’s product is now cleared to be sold in both the U.S. and the EU, per the release.
Another of Nanospectra’s commercial partners, Newark, Delaware-based LiteCure LLC, is using the company’s microparticles in its veterinary division to treat pets and other animals suffering from cancer. The LiteCure procedure “demonstrated the ability to ablate solid tumors without undue damage to adjacent healthy tissue,” per the release. Nanospectra has an exclusive license with LiteCure to be the sole provider of this nanotechnology, and LiteCure plans to launch the commercial product in the first half of 2019, according to the release.
Nanospectra is planning to raise funds through a Series C financing round in the near future, so it can break even and begin a cash flow for its prostate cancer research, according to Jorden. He said that the company is also interested in using the nanotechnology to treat other forms of cancer, such as melanoma, lung cancer and breast cancer.
Nanospectra Biosciences Inc. consists of five full-time Houston employees and various external consultants, Jorden said. The company was founded in 2001.