Israeli upstart raises $15M for U.S. pivotal trial of bioresorbable cartilage implant

Regentis' GelrinC--Courtesy of Regentis

Regentis Biomaterials has raised a $15 million Series D round from investors led by Chinese biopharma Haisco Pharmaceutical Group. The Israeli cartilage repair company will use the financing to conduct a U.S. pivotal trial of its GelrinC, which is implanted as a liquid and forms into a resorbable implant that is ultimately replaced by newly regenerated cartilage.

In a trial in Europe and Israel, GelrinC offered patients with cartilage injuries "exceptional relief from knee pain and improved function to return to normal activities," according to the company. It's expected to be useful across a wide range of types of cartilage deficiencies and injuries.

As part of the investment, Haisco gains exclusive distributor rights to GelrinC in China.

"We are delighted to enter the Israeli market with a significant investment in Regentis Biomaterial," said Haisco's CEO Wang Junmin. "We see great potential for GelrinC in China and look forward to applying our know-how and experience in bringing this exciting surgical technology to the China market for the benefit of patients, surgeons and hospitals alike."

GelrinC is based on technology from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. It's a hydrogel matrix of polyethylene glycol diacrylate (PEG-DA), which produces a dense hydrogel network, and denatured fibrinogen, which offers cleavage sites for enzymatic degradation. The liquid implant becomes a gel via photopolymerization with UV light--therefore it can be molded into any shape or size and can be injected into the injury site and then polymerized.

Regentis investors in this latest round also include Medica Partners, SCP Vitalife Partners, Generali Financial Holdings as well as the Technion Research & Development Foundation and the Technion Innovation Opportunities Fund.

- here is the announcement