A Madison-based biotech startup with ambitious goals is adding staff and expanding testing capabilities as it seeks early-stage investment.
JangoBio is trying to develop regenerative therapy products which would diminish the effects of aging caused by imbalanced hormones. By regrowing certain tissues in the body, the company seeks to recreate the hormonal balance that slips away as people age.
Bill Kohl, COO for JangoBio, says the company’s hormone replacement therapies will “bring unparalleled improvements to health and well being.”
The 2-year-old company is currently soliciting first round angel investment, and will close on that as soon as the round meets the company’s target goal, which was $250,000 in early 2017. Following rounds will likely involve venture capital investments, Kohl says, adding that JangoBio has already begun approaching these VCs.
JangoBio received a Phase 1 NIH grant for $364,000, and has used these funds to set up a laboratory at University Research Park in Madison and begin testing cell products. The company has added seven staff members, and has 40 animals for testing.
Kohl says initial goals have been to develop optimal cell lines outside of a living organism that produce the highest possible levels of target hormones, and to refine the application of cell therapies to animal models.
“This involves ‘educating’ our cells to differentiate into cell types that when injected into animals will integrate and regenerate the cells required to produced the desired hormones,” Kohl said. “In the next few weeks we will utilize the most promising cell candidates and routes of administration to increase desired hormone levels in our animals, the results of which will be available over the next few months.”
He says he doesn’t expect to find the perfect combination of cell treatment and application route “right out of the gate,” but hopes to generate data which will guide the company’s direction.
With any luck, he said, early advances will “accelerate commercialization” into companion animals next year, followed by humans.