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2 S.A. biotech firms get $100,000 seed investments
April 24, 2012

,By David Hendricks, San Antonio Express-News

Two San Antonio startup biotechnology companies each received $100,000 in seed investments Tuesday from The Texas Technology Development Corp., or T3DC, a nonprofit investment fund.

The companies are OtoMetrix Medical Technologies, which is developing a diagnostic device for ear infections, and RAPA Holdings, which is developing a therapeutic drug for age-related diseases.

The investments were announced at the quarterly Emerging Venture Pipeline Luncheon held by T3DC and the Texas Research and Technology Foundation. It was attended by 165 investors, entrepreneurs and service professionals.

OtoMetrix was founded by Dr. George Gates, a former chairman of the ear-nose-throat surgery department of the University of Texas Health Science Center.
OtoMetrix plans to develop, manufacture and sell a device aimed at reducing the guesswork in determining whether ear infections, especially in children, are caused by bacteria, a virus or crying. "It is a practice-changing device," Gates said.

RAPA Holdings was founded by George Fillis.
Both companies received the investments from T3DC's McDermott Pre-seed Investment Fund. T3DC is headed by CEO and President Randy Goldsmith.

The luncheon's main speaker was Paul Castella, principal of Incyte Ventures in San Antonio, which operates a $12 million life-science investment fund called Targeted Technology Fund I. The fund was founded in 2009. Other Incyte officers include Alan Dean and Christopher Banas.

The fund invests in eight biotechnology companies, including five from San Antonio, including Vidacare Corp., which makes bone-related medical devices; ENTrigue Surgical Inc., which makes ear-nose-throat surgical devices, and ViroXis Corp., which sells an anti-viral drug for warts.

Being a small fund, Castella said, Incyte seeks to invest in companies that need little capital to commercialize their products and whose products can reach market quickly.


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