With FDA Clearance, Molecular Matrix Looks to Make a Lasting Clinical Impact

When Molecular Matrix founder Charles Lee first began experimenting with stem cells as an undergraduate at UC Davis, the idea of running a biotechnology startup probably seemed far fetched. With the Food and Drug Administration’s clearance of Molecular Matrix’s synthetic bone graft product Osteo-P, however, Lee now finds himself using this startup to drive significant innovations in healthcare. Perhaps most exciting for the young entrepreneur is that, thanks to UC Davis, he’s been able to be a part of the project every step of the way.

It was his mentor Alice Tarantal, a professor of pediatrics at the the UC Davis School of Medicine, who first gave him a line of stem cells to culture. Lee fell in love with the possibilities offered by his research, namely the idea of creating a polymer platform for growing these stem cells into layers. While this had certainly been done before, Lee’s solution was unique in that it utilized cross-linked carbohydrate molecules to create a structure that not only allows for stem cell growth, but also degrades once that growth is accomplished in a way that does not affect the cells themselves.

He worked on this as he completed a PhD, as well as postdoctoral work, all at UC Davis. In 2011, UC Davis believed in the work so much that they helped him found Molecular Matrix. The company used this polymer structure that Lee had created and managed to develop a product, Osteo-P, that would help bones regrow, this time without stem cell transplantation.

This is particularly impactful for patients who have had bone removed in surgery and as the graft acts as a support and guide for the patient’s own bone growth. This means that, eventually the grafted Osteo-P will be completely replaced with new bone growth. For the university, their involvement in Molecular Matrix, and their inter-departmental commitment to its success, is a prime example of how it is able to make a lasting societal impact.

With the recent announcement that Osteo-P has cleared FDA regulations for clinical use, Lee is experiencing a dream realized. He has surrounded himself with a passionate and engaged team, receives help from the university to attract funding, and continues to offer students opportunities to work with Molecular Matrix both as interns and employees. Just as his professor had done when he started, Lee is helping to encourage a love for polymer development and stem cell research in the newest generation of student scientists.

Follow us on social media for the latest updates in B2B!

Image

Latest

Listen Carefully, Respond Creatively
April 12, 2024

In this captivating episode of the Fans First series, Jesse Cole, the mastermind behind the Savannah Bananas, delves into the transformative business philosophy of “listen carefully, respond creatively.” This approach has not only skyrocketed the Savannah Bananas to fame but also serves as a universal blueprint for revolutionizing customer service and engagement across all sectors. […]

Read More
Stacey Childress, Senior Advisor at McKinsey and Company, discusses higher ed
Bold Measures are Needed to Improve Investment in Higher Education
April 12, 2024

The stakes for higher education have never been higher as the educational landscape sees rapid evolution. As universities and colleges grapple with the dual challenges of technological disruption and increasing demands for accessible, quality education, the question of how best to implement investment in higher education becomes a priority. This debate has been ignited […]

Read More
wake up healthy
Hey, it’s 9 am… Wake up Healthy with 9amHealth!
April 12, 2024

Healthcare Rethink host Brian Urban explores ways to wake up healthy and stay healthy with his guest, Dr. Avantika Waring, MD, the Chief Medical Officer, at 9amHealth. This episode delves into the transformative approach to healthcare delivery championed by 9amHealth. Dr. Waring’s journey from a humanities student with a love for French to a […]

Read More
public safety and security
Strengthen Public Safety and Security: Modernize Radio Communication for Better Field Response
April 11, 2024

The importance of radio communication within public safety and security operations remains unbeaten in an era dominated by digital transformation. This medium, essential for over a century, continues to be the lifeline for responders on the front lines. From ensuring the safety of field agents to facilitating real-time critical information flow and enhancing situational […]

Read More