TEDCO Invests $400K in Life Science Companies

COLUMBIA, Md. (January 12, 2016) – The Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO) announced today that two companies received a total of $400,000 in funding through its Life Science Investment Fund (LSIF) – one of TEDCO’s Seed Investment Funds.

“The Life Science Investment Fund exists to meet the needs of Maryland companies developing products addressing human health that require approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for commercialization,” stated TEDCO President and Chief Operating Officer John Wasilisin. “TEDCO’s life science investments enable the companies to reach critical milestones early in their product development efforts, to increase the company’s valuation, and to better position the company for follow-on investment, product commercialization, and job creation.”

Each company will receive $200,000. The two companies, who were evaluated by a review panel consisting of FDA consultants, investors, and C-level biotechnology and life science executives, and others, are:

  • SAJE Pharma, of Baltimore, Md., has developed a new therapy for the treatment of patients with interstitial lung diseases (ILD), specifically idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). Their orally bioavailable compounds reverse existing fibrosis which is a novel and highly significant finding. The goals of the LSIF project are to take the compound to the next stage of its development — initial safety and pharmacology studies that will determine whether it is safe enough to begin human clinical trials and for FDA approval.
  • Promaxo, Inc., of Rockville, Md., is a medical device company developing and commercializing an office-based, portable MRI with cellular level spatial resolution and real-time biopsy and treatment tools. Their patented MR technology takes advantage of proprietary ultra-fast and strong rise-and fall gradients and pre-polarization fields, which can be switched on rapidly without causing bio- effects (e.g., nerve stimulation). Promaxo’s MR platform technology is protected by 17 issued and pending patents and has successfully undergone a 26-patient safety trial. LSIF funds will be used in finalizing the clinical prototype, and performing phantom and animal validation studies for FDA 510K submission.

“These ‘lifescience/biohealth’ start-ups face a long runway to commercialization, requiring multiple investment rounds based on critical product development success,” stated LSIF Manager, Dr. Arti Santhanam.  “The TEDCO investments will help these companies bridge the gap to FDA approval while improving their company valuation to help raise capital from sophisticated investors. In fact, two of our current portfolio companies have already successfully raised follow-on capital.”

LSIF makes investments of up to $200,000 for a period of one year to support milestone-based projects that advance their medical product toward commercialization. Investments are made in the form of a five-year, convertible note to the company.

TEDCO plans to make 5 – 6 investments per year and applications are accepted on a rolling basis.  Fund investment terms and conditions can be found online at http://tedco.md/program/the-life-science-investment-fund-lsif/. For more information about TEDCO’s Life Science Investment Fund, contact Dr. Arti Santhanam at asanthanam@tedco.md or 410-715-4182.

The Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO) is the go-to source for entrepreneurial support and guidance for start-ups and early-stage companies engaged in bringing innovative ideas to market. For over fifteen years, the organization has provided funding, mentoring and networking opportunities to support Maryland’s innovation ecosystem. It is frequently ranked as one of the most active seed/early-stage investors in the nation. The organization plays a key role in bringing research created in Maryland’s educational institutions and federal laboratories into the commercial marketplace. For more information on TEDCO and its programs and resources, visit www.TEDCO.md.


Media Contact
Tammi L. Thomas

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