An Oxford-based company has scored £1.2M in seed investment to develop a non-surgical weight loss technology based around a self-expanding hydrogel capsule that expands in the stomach.
Oxford Medical Products (OMP) has created Sirona, which can make the swallower feel full within fifteen minutes. The startup says that the innovation works in a similar way to a gastric balloon but without the need for invasive surgery. It hopes to start the trial next year and launch a real-world product by 2024.
The investment was led by Ada Ventures with Selvedge Venture, with several angel investors also chipping in. The cash will fund pre-clinical testing, hello developing manufacturing and growing the team.
Dr. Camilla Easter, CEO of Oxford Medical Products, said, “Weight gain is preventable but, despite over a hundred years of attempts, no universally safe and effective non-surgical weight-loss solution has been found. All successful solutions involve surgery which is costly and invasive. Treatments that are low cost and widely available, historically have poor results, with little or no lasting weight loss for the average person. Oxford Medical Products is here to change this and to hand millions the power to achieve a healthy weight.”
Check Warner, Founding Partner of Ada Ventures commented, “At Ada Ventures we are looking to fund bold, ground-breaking ideas which could positively impact billions of people in big markets. Excessive weight is undoubtedly one of the biggest health challenges we face as a society and is accelerating rapidly. Current ‘treatments’ for obesity are short-term and ineffective or are not widely available and carry unnecessary risk. We are delighted to have led this fundraising round to bring Sirona to market and we look forward to supporting the company through the next phase of development.”
Alasdair Thong, Founding Partner of Selvedge Venture said, “We’re thrilled to be part of the Oxford Medical Products’ journey and to help develop its unique hydrogel platform technology. At Selvedge Venture, we have a focus on investing to alleviate the vast burden caused by chronic diseases including obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and fatty liver disease and we have a huge belief that the development and commercialisation of Sirona will be a key piece of this strategy.”