It’s an observable fact; fly larvae are prone to ingest dead, damaged and infected skin. While this piece of information may not be particularly pleasant for the squeamish, it is actually helping health care professionals develop a new method of wound care. BioMonde, a Welsh company providing this larval therapy, recently expanded to the United States, and it found its home at the Innovation Hub right here in Gainesville.
BioMonde first emerged as the maker of polyester mesh bags to contain the larvae, while modern use of the therapy was commercialized by the company ZooBiotic. ZooBiotic has since acquired BioMonde, which allowed the company to keep its name. Together, the two form the largest larval therapy provider in Europe.
The move to the U.S. was largely contingent on the Food and Drug Administration clearing the company’s BioBag, which it did in August 2013. This allowed the company to secure $5 million from private investors to help fund their ventures here in the U.S.
The company will be starting a 140-patient clinical trial in collaboration with the University of Florida and the VA Hospital, which will focus on the efficacy of the BioBag in comparison to cutting away dead tissue. BioMonde’s hope is to have the BioBags commercially available in December, as the company expects to grow considerably within the next couple of years and already has plans to move into larger facilities in the Innovation Square in the next 12 to 18 months.
As far as the move abroad goes, Katy Nicell, the company’s product manager stationed here in Gainesville, has found it to be better than expected. “It’s a perfect place for us in our early 30s, the bugs and humidity aside," she said. "Everyone’s been real friendly, and then to come to a place like Innovation Hub on a daily basis, it’s pretty special."