October 25, 2021
Contraline, Inc., a venture-backed medical device company devoted to providing men and couples with long-lasting, safe, and effective male contraception, has closed $10.7 million in its Series A financing. The financing round was led by MBX Capital, a venture capital firm that invests in early-stage healthcare and life sciences companies. Additional investors in Contraline include: Rhia Ventures, ShangBay Capital, Founders Fund, Metaplanet Holdings, Graphene Ventures, Smith Ventures, Jaffray Woodriff, and Jason Calacanis.
This infusion of capital will support the initiation of a first-in-human trial of ADAM™, the world’s first hydrogel implant designed to provide long-lasting, non-permanent contraception for men. The ADAM hydrogel is injected into the vas deferens through a quick and minimally invasive outpatient procedure, where it’s designed to block the flow of sperm. Contraline has received ethics approval from the Human Research Ethics Committee based in Melbourne, Australia to conduct the study. The clinical trial will be conducted by renown urologists at two hospitals in Melbourne. This trial on ADAM is believed to be the first clinical trial on a non-hormonal male contraceptive device in over 20 years.
“The Contraline team has designed a novel hydrogel and insertion procedure that has great potential to achieve the safety, durability, and efficacy required for a world-changing new male contraceptive. Currently, there are no long-lasting, non-permanent male contraceptives available, and ADAM has the potential to be a first of its kind product that revolutionizes how we think about contraception," said Gurdane Bhutani, co-founder and managing partner of MBX Capital.
As Contraline initiates its first-in-human clinical trial, leading urologist and entrepreneur Alexander W. Pastuszak, MD, PhD, is joining as Acting Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Pastuszak is an Assistant Professor of Urology at The University of Utah School of Medicine where he has specialized in the treatment of male infertility and sexual dysfunction. Dr. Pastuszak has published over 130 peer-reviewed articles, with several focused on vasectomy and vasectomy reversal, and runs an NIH-funded laboratory investigating the genetics of men’s health conditions. He also serves as Chief Clinical Officer of Vault Health, a hyper growth company accelerating better health outcomes through faster diagnosis, innovative clinical research, and digital-first care delivery. Dr. Pastuszak developed the "Vas Reverse" iOS app to educate and guide patients seeking vasectomy reversal and founded Woven Health, a company focused on empowering medical professionals to deliver higher quality, more efficient, and more accountable patient care.
“Nearly half of all pregnancies in the United States each year are unintended, with three-fourths of couples relying on women for birth control. Men's options are limited to temporary methods like condoms or withdrawal, or vasectomy, a permanent method. There is great need for a new appealing male contraceptive to contribute to family planning and improved quality of life,” said Dr. Pastuszak. “I believe that Contraline’s product ADAM could be a game changer for men who want more control over their fertility as well as couples who struggle with their reliance on female contraception.”
“We have completed preclinical R&D and manufacturing of the ADAM System to be used in humans, and we now have the financing, ethics approval, and team in place to transition ADAM into clinical trials,” said Kevin Eisenfrats, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Contraline. “It’s been over 60 years since the hormonal female pill was launched, with few innovations for either men or women. This trial will launch the next generation of non-hormonal male contraceptives, increasing choice for men and achieving public health impact.