New life sciences fund announced to boost commercialization of UAB innovation – News


The Life Sciences Fund will focus on developing early stage UAB technologies and startups.

Written by Briana Bryant
Media contact: Jeff Hansen

The Life Sciences Fund will focus on developing early stage UAB technologies and startups.Birmingham based venture capital firm First avenue businesses has launched a multi-million dollar research-driven life sciences fund developed at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and announces its first investment in startup UAB ResBiotic Inc.

The First Avenue Ventures Life Sciences Fund I will invest in early stage drugs, therapies and devices developed at UAB and Birmingham.

The fund and the Bill L. Harbert Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at UAB will coordinate to energize the emerging local ecosystem of life sciences.

“The mission of First Avenue is to help develop Birmingham’s entrepreneurial ecosystem,” said Mike Goodrich, Founder and Fund Manager of First Avenue Ventures. “Working with UAB enables us to better fulfill this mission of developing Birmingham businesses and building a better future for our families and our workforce. “

The partnership will boost Birmingham’s economic development and advance vital research statewide, further supporting the research, innovation and economic development pillar of UAB’s strategic plan, Forging the Future.

“The First Avenue Ventures Life Sciences Fund provides an essential resource for early stage companies in the UAB pipeline,” said Kathy Nugent, Ph.D., executive director of the Bill L. Harbert Institute for innovation and entrepreneurship and president of Clinical and Diagnostic Sciences at the School of Health Professions. “Focusing these resources on life sciences at an early stage will help bridge the gap for companies coming out of the lab. “

Saksham Narang, First Avenue Ventures fund manager and former venture capital advisor at UAB, will act as the fund’s liaison with the university. “Corporate-funded businesses bring well-paying jobs, financial opportunities and economic growth to a city. We can share the prosperity of coastal life science innovation hubs right here in Birmingham. “

First Avenue Ventures recently announced the fund’s first investment in ResBiotic Inc., the flagship company of UAB startup ResBiotech, founded by medical scientist Charitharth Vivek Lal, MD, associate professor in the department of pediatrics at UAB, division of neonatology. The investment will support the commercialization of probiotics to cure chronic lung disease.

“With the help of the Life Sciences Fund of First Avenue Ventures and our other investors, ResBiotic is taking a critical step in providing patients and pulmonologists with scientific solutions to improve lung health,” said Lal, Founder, President and CSO by ResBiotic. “We appreciate the support and are delighted to see a local research-driven life sciences fund. “

Pediatrics is one of the departments of the UAB Marnix E. Heersink Faculty of Medicine.

For more information, contact Saksham Narang or visit

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