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Brandon links up with former partners to make fresh play in biotech sector

Three Irish biomedical companies are investing €3m in a new joint venture to make the chemicals required to make biodegradable human implants. The joint venture reunites Alltracel founder Gerry Brandon, who runs chemicals maker Cellulac, with his former colleague there Tony Richardson, who is now chief executive of AIM-listed clinical research organisation Venn Life Sciences.

The third member of the group which hopes to make the valuable medical-grade polylactic acid used to make the implants is Galway firm Biopharmed West.

"We've been working on this for a number of months," Brandon said. "This is an advanced technology. Medical grade polylactic acid sells for $6m a tonne so it is a big opportunity."

Brandon said Cellulac plans to make the chemicals with Venn ensuring it is medical grade while Biopharmed uses its existing network to distribute its product.

Brandon said he planned to raise €15m floating Cellulac in London and Dublin, which would help fund the project. His previous business Alltracel, a wound-care company, also listed on AIM before it was sold for €32m in 2008.

Irish Independent