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Start-ups

Demetrix raises funds for THC, CBD from yeast

by Melody M. Bomgardner
July 19, 2019 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 97, ISSUE 29

Demetrix has raised $50 million in a first round of venture funding to establish high-volume fermentation production of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD), and other cannabinoids. Backers include Tuatara Capital and Horizons Ventures. The California-based start-up was cofounded in 2015 by University of California, Berkeley, chemical engineering professor Jay Keasling. Demetrix says it will use a modified strain of baker’s yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, to produce the cannabinoids. The firm is targeting drug, supplement, and consumer product markets.

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