Featured Blog post
October 26, 2020
RICHMOND, VA – October 26, 2020 – The Virginia Catalyst, formerly known as the Virginia Biosciences Health Research Corporation (VBHRC), today announced that it has awarded $2.1 million in grants to three life and bioscience projects in the Commonwealth of Virginia. These grants, which will be met with significant matching funds from partner companies, were awarded as Round 11 of Virginia Catalyst’s ongoing mission to stimulate economic development by promoting collaborative projects that address large, unmet needs for improving human health, and that can create high-paying jobs in the Commonwealth.
“The life sciences industry has been a catalyst for economic growth during the pandemic and is poised to accelerate Virginia’s recovery in a post COVID world,” said Mike Grisham, CEO, Virginia Catalyst.
“Through programs like these grant initiatives, Virginia Catalyst and the Commonwealth of Virginia are investing in the future by driving additional capital and business opportunity through the life sciences. The funding we provide for these innovative programs helps generate significant outside capital and interest in Virginia. We are proud to announce the awardees for our eleventh round of funding as we help to finance the commercialization of Virginia’s innovations and investment in research infrastructure tools to facilitate bioscience research.”
Contraline is one of three companies to have been selected in this year's round of funding. Contraline's project, "Clinical Translation of a Male Contraceptive Procedure" will involve collaborating with UVA and VCU to prepare the company's lead product ADAM™ for use in humans.
"Nearly half of all pregnancies in the United States each year are unintended, with three-fourths of couples relying on the female partner for birth control. Currently, men's options are limited to condoms and vasectomy, creating a substantial opportunity for a novel male contraceptive to contribute to family planning and improved quality of life. Contraline, a spin-out from UVA, is a medical device company developing ADAM™, the world’s first injectable hydrogel designed to provide long-lasting barrier contraception for men. The hydrogel is inserted into the vas deferens through a quick outpatient procedure, which has been shown to be safe and effective in large animal studies. The Virginia Catalyst grant will support our translational research collaborating with UVA and VCU urology departments to ready our male contraceptive ADAM™ for a first-in-human clinical trial in 2021. This will be the first clinical trial conducted on a non-hormonal male contraceptive device in over 20 years and we are excited to partner with Virginia Catalyst to enable it.” - Kevin Eisenfrats, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Contraline, Inc.