Locate Bio has raised £9.2 million to fund a clinical study of LDGraft, a bone graft substitute for spinal fusion.

The funding comes from both new investors and existing investors, Mercia Ventures and BGF. 

Locate Bio, a spinout from the University of Nottingham, says it marks a significant milestone in its mission to relieve suffering and restore the quality of life for millions of patients suffering from debilitating orthopaedic conditions worldwide.

Locate Bio combines decades of research in advanced drug delivery systems and utilises a proprietary protein encapsulation method to deliver a powerful therapeutic protein called rhBMP-2. This is combined with an osteoconductive scaffold in LDGraft, which received an US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) breakthrough device designation in 2023.

“This oversubscribed funding round underscores the significant investor confidence in the company’s vision and the potential of LDGraft to become the most relied-on bone graft substitute globally,” said CEO John von Benecke.

“With the rapidly ageing global population, there is an urgent need for products that address chronic, progressive and debilitating back pain. 

“With a design inspired by nature for a more biomimetic approach to the release of rhBMP-2, we are incredibly excited about the potential of LDGraft. The RESTORE clinical trial is an important step towards realising that ambition.”

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Jonathan Earl, investor at BGF, said: “Locate Bio has demonstrated significant progress in its drive towards developing innovative solutions that address a wide range of musculoskeletal needs. 

“Their approach represents a significant breakthrough in this field and we look forward to providing continued support for the business as it moves through clinical trials and towards regulatory approval.”

Alex Gwyther, investor at Mercia Ventures, said: “We have long believed in Locate Bio’s mission to develop next generation orthobiologics that can transform patients’ lives. We are pleased to see both the progress in the technology and the world-class team that the company has brought together.”

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