WellGen to use $9.5mn financing to fund pipeline
Series C financing worth $9.5mn it plans to use to build a pipeline
of patented nutraceuticals.
The New Jersey-based biotechnology company screens the effect of food substances on gene expression associated with human health conditions. The firm said the capital raised in this round of financing will enable it to develop its black tea extract for anti-inflammatory support, and an anti-obesity ingredient, for functional foods. Investors in this round of financing include both new and existing WellGen shareholders. The Series C financing was substantially oversubscribed, according to the company, leading WellGen's board of directors to increase the size of the offering. "We are very pleased with WellGen's progress as we bring WG0401, our first ingredient, to market -- the result of years of painstaking scientific research," said WellGen CEO, Kathleen Mullinix. "This financing will reinforce WellGen's leadership position in the emerging field of nutrigenomics and functional foods." In July, the company obtained US Patent No.7,238,376, "Black tea extract for prevention of disease", which covers the use of WG0401 for arthritis, inflammation and cancer. While WellGen indicates WG0401 will initially be marketed as a functional food ingredient for joint health, immune-system support and anti-aging, as well as cardiovascular health, it says it is also planning further uses for the ingredient. The emerging field of nutrigenomics looks at how food bioactives can modulate gene expression in humans and potentially ward off particular diseases or conditions. "We believe that WellGen's exceptional scientific and managerial team is on the cusp of creating significant value from the company's proprietary products and technologies," said Richard Morgan, CEO of Amphion Innovations, a leading investor in WellGen. The firm also indicated the financing will support the launch of a human study on WG0401.