Jellagen awarded SMART grant funding from Innovate UK -- MEDICA - World Forum for Medicine



Jellagen awarded SMART grant funding from Innovate UK

Pembroke Dock, UK – 14th October 2014 – Jellagen Pty Ltd, a new medical-tech and healthcare company is pleased to announce the award of £99,985 SMART grant funding from Innovate UK (formally the Technology Strategy Board).

Funding from Innovate UK will help Jellagen improve the efficiency of collagen extraction to improve upon product quality and yield. Funding will also help the Company explore new manufacturing processes and nano-technologies utilising jellyfish derived, medical grade, Type II and Type V collagen for the fabrication of medical device applications. The 12 month project will allow Jellagen to access world class expertise at Swansea University’s Centre for Nano Health, Collagen Solutions Plc and
University College London (UCL), to deliver new processes and products. This funding will also allow for the generation of biological data on the use of jellyfish collagen and its applicability and comparison in bone graft medical applications.

Jellagen was founded in May 2013 by 2 highly experienced entrepreneurs Alex Mühlhölzl and Andrew Mearns Spragg and secured its first round funding of £550,000 in April 2014 from Finance Wales and Angel investors (xénos and SWAIN). The Company aims to be the world’s first provider of pharma
grade, GMP, and ISO certified Type II and Type V jellyfish collagen as a raw material. The company’s initial target market for the novel non-mammalian collagen product is the lucrative cell culture reagent market valued globally at US$14.7Bn in 2013 (Markets & Markets 2014). Future ambitions and development will be aimed at bone health and wound healing medical applications to further utilise the unique nature of Jellagen’s collagen products. The company offers the full spectrum of jellyfish derived collagen proteins, greatest demand being for
Type II – Type V, with others available upon request. Jellagen also offers a range of additional “products in development” for derma care and medical device applications. Collagen is used in the manufacture of biomaterials due to its ability to form strong fibres and is used in many forms (such as gels, scaffolds and membranes) for a number of medical applications ranging from wound care and cartilage repair through to bone grafts.
Jellagen operates from a processing facility at the Pembrokeshire Science and Technology Park in Pembrokeshire, Wales with its medical grade product being produced by its strategic partner Collagen Solutions Plc, Glasgow.

Andrew Mearns Spragg, the Company’s Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer said “We’re delighted to have been awarded this grant from Innovate UK. The grant will help support continued development of our jellyfish collagen products and expand the company into new markets. The funding provides a great opportunity to work with our strategic partners Collagen Solutions Plc on improving our existing collagen production processes but also provides us access to world class academic expertise providing us access to novel engineering solutions that will help better define the structural and mechanical
properties of our collagen products geared towards bone health market applications.”

Alex Mühlhölzl the Company’s Founder and Chief Technology Officer added: “The funding from Innovate UK’s SMART grant is a great opportunity for the continued development of our jellyfish
collagen products. We look forward to working with our contract partners at the Centre for Nano Health and University College London on developing innovative techniques to create novel collagen Type II based medical-device products. These techniques will include the use of Atomic Force Microscopy,
rheology and use of electrospinning methodologies in the development of new bone graft devices but will also increase our understanding of the mechanical properties of collagen at the nano-level.”