Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Bright Biotech raises $3.2m for plant based recombinant proteins

Post Thumbnail

Manchester-based biotech startup Bright Biotech has raised seed funding to develop its plant based growth factors and drive the development of sustainable meat production.

  • Growth factors are proteins that stimulate cell growth, differentiation, survival, inflammation, and tissue repair.
  • Bright Biotech will use its $3.2m investment to lower the costs of growth factors, addressing one of the major expenses in the production of cultivated meat.
  • Scaling the production of growth factors for the cultivated meat industry will enable significant cost savings and accelerate the shift of cultivated meat towards industrial scale production. 

Having previously raised around $3.4 million to date, Bright Biotech’s latest seed round of $3.2 million came from a consortium led by pan-European early-stage VC investor and venture studio for food, sustainability and health – Food Labs.

The consortium joins existing investors including FoodLabs, Big Idea Ventures, CPT Capital, the FoodHack syndicate (including angels Martin Weber, Lize Hartley, Lian Michelson, Ryan Grant Little , Emilie Dellecker, Adrian Froehling, Daniel Skavén Ruben, Felix Leonhardt and Sina Kashiri, MBA) and angels Joy Faucher and Grant Aarons.

What does Bright Biotech do?

Bright Biotech is a leader in chloroplast-based expression, which enables it to produce high yields of low-cost growth factors from plants. Growth factors are necessary proteins that promote cell differentiation, growth and proliferation in the production of cultivated meat. By significantly reducing the price of growth factors, the industry’s largest cost driver, Bright Biotech will facilitate the industrialisation of cultivated meat, which could be a $116 billion global industry by 2040.

Bright Biotech is using a proprietary light-driven, protein expression technology that uses chloroplasts to make extraordinarily high yields of proteins in plants. It is currently focused on the production of recombinant growth factors, which aid cell growth to promote regenerative medicine practices as well as industry processes such as clean meat production.

The end result of its unique manufacturing system is sustainable, free of animal pathogens and bacterial endotoxins, and highly scalable. It is suitable for the recombinant protein contract manufacturing and development market.

Growth factors are critical to achieving price parity for cultivated meat

Despite being used in very low concentrations, growth factors make up at least 55% of the marginal cost of cultivated meat. They can cost several million dollars for a single gram, making them more expensive by weight than diamonds.

Up to three tonnes of various growth factors will have to be produced annually  if cultivated meat production is to scale to the extent that it secures just one percent of the global protein market. Today, barriers for producing cultivated meat at scale include the very high cost and bottlenecks in the supply of growth factors.

“Bright Biotech’s approach to harnessing chloroplasts for manufacturing growth factors in plants can be a game changer for the cultivated meat industry and will be a key enabler to achieve price parity”, said Christian Guba, Senior Associate at FoodLabs. “Mohammad and his team have impressed us not only with their deep expertise but also with a pace and progress rarely seen in terms of getting to market. We are very excited to support them in building a global champion.”

“We are glad to have won such renowned and like-minded investors backing our vision for a more sustainable food system”, said Mohammad El Hajj, co-founder and CEO of Bright Biotech. “With the fresh funding and our growing team of experienced scientists and production experts we are set for rapid commercialisation. Our technology is very timely for the cultivated meat industry, and we are thrilled to be working with our partners and investors to have the first products from our robust, ultra-scalable and sustainable technology available on the market in 2023.”

Enabling the cultivated meat industry for a more sustainable food industry

Cultivated meat has emerged as a potential solution to the increasing demand for animal proteins, which is being driven by ongoing trends in population and economic growth. By taking advantage of natural growth processes, cultivated meat matches the tastes and textures of conventionally farmed meats that are widely associated with animal cruelty and environmental consequences.

As such, the industrialisation of cultivated meat is expected to reverse the harm done to animals, people and the environment while allowing meat eaters to continue to experience what Bright Biotech call “the enjoyable, delicious, and nutritious meat experiences.”

More from SG Voice

Latest Posts