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Google Ventures Backs Oral Insulin Company

Posted Sep 04, 2013


How awesome would it be if a diabetes patient could swallow a pill to get his or her daily dose of insulin, rather than take painful injections?

Google Ventures has just invested more than $10 million along with InCube Labs and VentureHealth in a series B round for Rani Therapeutics, a San Jose, California-based early stage start-up developing novel approaches for oral delivery of typically injected drugs like insulin and TNF alpha-inhibitors. Rani Therapeutics is attempting to disrupt a multi-billion dollar market with its easy-to-take oral alternatives to injectable drugs. According to the company website, the oral drugs are currently in pre-clinical studies and they have demonstrated double digit bioavailability. The technology for Rani Therapeutics was developed at InCube Labs, a multi-disciplinary life sciences R&D lab that has been creating new medical technologies. InCube is led by Mir Imran, an entrepreneur and investor with a stellar track record and who was the first person ever to articulate the concept of embolic protection during high-risk interventions.

The concept of converting large molecule injectable drugs into pills has been a dream for several pharmaceutical and drug companies, but the approach has several obstacles.The main one is the destructive ability of the digestive tract, preventing the oral drugs from reaching the bloodstream. Along with these technology challenges, such a drug would also require long clinical trials that could delay any returns on investment. But the fact that Mir Imran, who has a prolific track record of successfully solving complex healthcare problems, is backing Rani Therapeutics adds significant credibility to the venture.

“We are keenly aware of the magnitude of the problem we are solving, and the potential impact this technology could have on the market,” said Mir Imran, Chairman & CEO, Rani Therapeutics. “We are seeing tremendous results from our pre-clinical studies. Google Ventures’ investment is a great vote of confidence in our company, and we are looking forward to the next exciting phase in our development.” 

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