Novo Holdings invests €5m in Danish start up supporting healthy microbiome in animals and humans

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

© GettyImages/PeterHermesFurian
© GettyImages/PeterHermesFurian

Related tags microbiome Antibiotics piglet Diarrhea nanobodies

Novo Seeds, the early stage investment and company creation team of Novo Holdings, today announced that it is leading a €7m seed investment into Bactolife, a Danish start-up developing novel biological solutions to reduce the risk of gastrointestinal infections in animals and humans.

Existing, private investors also participated in the fundraising exercise.

Bactolife said the capital generated will advance its pipeline projects and cement its first mover advantage in terms of its novel technology, which is based on nanobodies for management of bacterial virulence without the use of antibiotics. Its proprietary platform works by selecting and producing virulence inactivating proteins ​(VIPs), without targeting growth or killing the bacteria directly. 

The technology can drastically lower use of antimicrobials in both humans and animals, addressing the urgent need for alternative strategies for management of gastrointestinal infections that have a huge economic impact, both in terms of productivity in animal production and on health care systems worldwide, it said.

Bactolife maintains that its lead product, Ablacto+, has demonstrated efficacy in preventing post-weaning diarrhea (PWD) in piglets.

Moreover, there are processing advantages as VIPs are stable and cost-effective and can be manufactured at large-scale using state-of-the-art systems for biomanufacturing, according to the Danish company.

Mads Laustsen, CEO of Bactolife, said if successful, its pipeline will pave the way for an entirely new paradigm for supporting the microbiome against pathogenic organisms. "Our technology would be applicable to the animal feed and human dietary supplement segments.”

Aleks Engel, partner at Novo Holdings, commented: “There is an urgent need and immense potential for alternative, non-antibiotic, and cost-effective solutions. We believe that Bactolife is well-positioned to bring to market a new technology that will benefit both animals and humans with low cost of manufacturing and proven efficacy.”

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