Vitanova Biomedical, a San Antonio, Texas-based biotechnology company dedicated to improving the lives of cancer patients and the healthcare professionals who care for them, has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) SBIR grant for $225,000 to conduct research and development (R&D) work on the company’s light-activated intracellular acidosis (LAIA) targeted cancer therapy.
Vitanova Biomedical is developing a prostate-specific membrane antigen targeted drug, VNBp-1, formulated as a first-line treatment for local stage prostate cancer. Light-activated VNBp-1 is designed as an effective alternative to the current standard of care treatments, with the potential to eliminate the unwanted side effects of current cancer treatments. VNB will exclusively utilize LiteCure Medical Lasers’ medical laser technology as the energy source to activate its proprietary drug.
“NSF is proud to support the technology of the future by thinking beyond incremental developments and funding the most creative, impactful ideas across all markets and areas of science and engineering,” said Andrea Belz, Division Director of the Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships at NSF.
“This NSF SBIR Phase I award will significantly advance the development of our LAIA targeted cancer therapy by funding our planned proof-of-principle studies,” added Dr. Matthew Gdovin, VNB Founder, and Chief Science Officer.
Once a small business is awarded a Phase I SBIR grant (up to $256,000), it becomes eligible to apply for a Phase II grant (up to $1,000,000). Small businesses with Phase II grants are eligible to receive up to $500,000 in additional matching funds with qualifying third-party investment or sales. All proposals submitted to the NSF SBIR program, also known as America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF, undergo a rigorous merit-based review process. To learn more about America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF, visit here.