YourChoice Therapeutics — a startup launched by a team of Berkeley researchers, is working on producing a unisex, non-hormonal alternative to the birth control pills and methods available in the market.
The company has raised $400,000 in funding and a $150,000 check from Y Combinator. Currently, it is seeking $2 million in venture capital funding to do the research and continue working on sperm cell-targeting novel method of contraception and expand its team of chemists.
Founders Akash Bakshi and Nadja Mannowetz want to take over the contraceptive market by 2025.
“There are perhaps ways that we could cut that time in half or just get something to market,” said Bakshi, “But we need to do this right so that we can benefit as many women as possible.”
They will first launch a vaginal contraceptive to be applied before intercourse, and thereafter they will release oral contraceptives for both genders. The pill will be non-hormonal so women and men are not at an increased risk of blood clots, cancer or other side effects associated with mainstream birth control methods.
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