Orthopaedic Research UK Announces First Startup Investment
- Medical research charity ORUK and healthtech accelerator HS. have announced an £140k investment in regenerative medicine company, Renovos
- This marks the first investment announcement from the Ronald Furlong Fund, as one of the first UK charities moving into the investment space
- Renovos is the creator of nanoclay gel technology Renovite TM , which could solve key issues for patients undergoing orthopaedic surgery
Orthopaedic Research UK (ORUK) has announced that biotech startup, Renovos, will receive the first investment from its newly launched the Ronald Furlong Fund, a partnership between ORUK and HS., established this year in memory of the charity’s founder.
The announcement comes after a national competition, during which, startups were put through their paces by leading healthtech experts, HS., and a final decision made by the ORUK scientific and investment committees.
The £140,000 investment will support the biotech entrepreneurs in solving a key unmet need for patients with painful and debilitating bone and joint conditions.
Renovos, a regenerative medicine company, has now raised £700k to date and is a pioneer of new nanoclay gel technology Renovite ® , which has the potential to transform orthopaedic surgery. The gel allows a 100x lower dose of powerful regenerative therapeutic agent to be precisely delivered and localised to the sites where needed, and early trial data demonstrates that it contributes to improved bone healing. This consequently offers a step-change improvement in safety, efficacy and ease of use, as well as reduced adverse events and complications compared with current orthopaedic interventions.
ORUK is one of the first UK charities to invest in promising technology startups following a growing trend in the US. Previously the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation invested into a small biotech firm, later enabling the charity to deploy the investment returns into more initiatives to support and improve the lives of people living with the condition.
Dr Arash Angadji, CEO of ORUK said:
“We are the first charity supporting start-ups with a focus on musculoskeletal health in the UK. The Ronald Furlong Fund initiative will play an important role in assisting entrepreneurs and innovators to quickly turn ideas into reality, with measurable benefits for the entire healthcare ecosystem. Effective collaboration with HS. was instrumental in identifying Renovos and their exciting technology, and I am delighted to welcome them as ORUK’s first investment.”
Professor Richard OC Oreffo, Founder and CSO of Renovos said:
“We are delighted to receive support from ORUK, which will aid the development of our next generation orthopaedic regenerative medicine solutions, harnessing nanoclay gels to deliver bone forming agents safely and cost effectively. The partnership will significantly enhance Renovos’ ability to further develop innovative technologies to support the ageing population as well as younger, active individuals.”
Bringing Renovos into the HS. portfolio, Founding Partner, Dr. James Somauroo said:
“It quickly became apparent that Renovos has the potential to fundamentally change the way extremely powerful and sometimes harmful drugs are given around bone. During the interview phase we were impressed by the immense knowledge and expertise of the team and we’re now excited to join the journey and to use our networks to help take them to the next level.”
Renovos’ Renovite ® is underpinned by decades of pre-clinical research at the University of Southampton and Professor Peter J.S. Smith, Director, Institute for Life Sciences, University of Southampton has praised the innovation for its potential to create positive impact for patients and health systems of the future.
With an ultimate vision of pain-free movement for all, ORUK will continue to search for and invest in promising start-ups, to support the creation of cutting-edge solutions that will benefit those living with debilitating bone and joint conditions.
For more information about how to apply to The Ronald Furlong Fund visit: https://www.oruk.org/research/for-researchers/furlongfund/
NOTES TO EDITORS
To arrange an interview with XXXXX, please contact [email protected]
ORUK is a medical charity dedicated to the ideals of innovation, knowledge expansion and improvement of lives affected by musculoskeletal conditions. From painful arthritis, debilitating movement disorders to injuries caused as a result of trauma, ORUK focuses its research on a variety of bone and joint conditions with the sole aim of enhancing the quality of life for patients worldwide. The charity also runs high quality educational programmes, covering basic and clinical science courses to help train clinicians and scientists, who will utilise their gained knowledge to provide the best care and service to those in need. ORUK was founded in 1989 by the eminent orthopaedic surgeon, Mr Ronald Furlong, who revolutionised artificial joint implant design and dramatically improved outcomes for patients around the globe.
HS. is an accelerator for businesses using technology to tackle the world’s most pressing healthcare challenges. Our goal is to find the most talented individuals and companies to solve healthcare’s biggest problems – we want to improve lives on a global scale. The programme builds, scales and invests in healthcare technology businesses, helps larger organisations drive healthcare innovation at a corporate level, positioning the UK at the forefront of innovation in global healthcare. Founded by NHS doctors, entrepreneurs and healthtech investors, HS. launched in April 2018, and accepts applications on a rolling basis.
Renovos, based on over a decade of world-class research at the University of Southampton, is pioneering the use of synthetic nanoclay gels to deliver, retain and safely release biologics for orthopaedic applications. Renovos’ proprietary formulations, Renovite™, are easy to handle, form a biodegradable gel after injection and can deliver ultra-low doses of biologics versus other formulations with the same efficacy. The Renovite™ platform retains active agents and releases them only to target cells interacting with the nanoclay. Renovos’ mission is to unlock the full potential of regenerative medicine with our innovative Renovite™ technology platform, and help clinicians deliver safe and more efficacious treatments for tissue repair. With a granted patent and a strong scientific and commercial team, the company is now raising further funds to complete pre-clinical development and enable clinical trials to start in 2022.
Spokespeople for interviews:
Mr Evan Davies BM FRCS Ed (Trauma & Orthopaedics)
Consultant Spinal Surgeon
University Hospital Southampton
Trustee Injured Players Foundation Rugby Football Union
Trustee AO Foundation
Chairman STC Tr & O Wessex
- ORUK media spokesperson – Arash
- Renovos media spokesperson – Agnieszka
- Renovos clay science spokesperson – Jon
- Renovos general orthopaedic and regen medicine research spokesperson – Richard