Modern Meadow is developing a fundamentally new 3D printing approach to meat and leather production that is based on the latest advances in tissue and engineering which causes no harm to animals.
Co-founders Gabor and Andras Forgacs respectively invented and helped commercialise bioprinting, a technology that builds tissues and organ structures based on the computer-controlled delivery of cells in three dimensions. They previously co-founded Organovo, a San Diego-based regenerative medicine company which applies bioprinting to a range of medical applications, including drug discovery, drug testing and ultimately transplant tissues. With Breakout Labs funding, they plan to apply the latest advances in tissue engineering beyond medicine to produce novel consumer biomaterials, including an edible meat prototype that can provide a humane and sustainable source of animal protein to consumers around the world.
''Breakout Labs is a much-needed source of funding and support for emerging technologies like ours,'' said Andras Forgacs. ''Investors across the board have become more risk-averse and yet early funding is critical to enable truly innovative ideas. We are proud to be a part of the Breakout Labs program.''
''Modern Meadow is combining regenerative medicine with 3D printing to imagine an economic and compassionate solution to a global problem,'' said Lindy Fishburne, Breakout Labs' executive director. ''We hope our support will help propel them through the early stage of their development, so they can turn their inspired vision into reality.''
Additional Breakout Labs grants were awarded to Bell Biosystems and Entopis. Entopis is developing a low-cost, versatile, nano-engineered platform for diagnosing multiple diseases from a single sample.
''People used to dream about how innovation would make the future a radically better, more advanced place,'' said Jonathan Cain, president of the Thiel Foundation. ''By funding unusual approaches to known challenges, such as conflict over food prices or the diagnosing and curing of diseases, we hope that Breakout Labs helps bring about the sort of technologically prosperous world that people once imagined possible.''