Mercia Technologies has returned to back Warwick-founded medtech spinout Medherant, which is preparing to advance its adhesive Tepi Patch technology through the clinic.

Medherant, a UK-based medical technology spinout of University of Warwick, has procured £2.4m ($3m) in a funding round led by investment firm Mercia Technologies with a $2.5m commitment.

Other investors in the round were not disclosed. Mercia Technologies now owns a 33.6% stake in the business.

Founded in 2014, Medherant exploits bioadhesives and polymer chemistry to develop treatments for pain and central nervous system-related diseases. It extends research by David Haddleton, a professor of chemistry at University of Warwick.

Medherant’s pipeline is led by an adhesive patch technology, branded Tepi Patch, that releases drugs into the body through the skin to prevent side-effects experienced with oral medications or injection.

The capital will fund Medherant as it prepares to select three Tepi candidates to progress to the clinic.

Variants of the patch announced to date include adhesives for ibuprofen and the local anaesthetic lidocaine. Tepi will be demonstrated at an industry convention in Philadelphia in June 2019.

Mercia Technology previously led a $5.1m round for Medherant in December 2017 with participation from unnamed backers, following a $2m round the previous September that included $860,000 from Mercia along with commitments of undisclosed investors.

Nigel Davis, chief executive of Medherant, said: “Tepi Patch technology holds great promise as a better way of delivering many different types of drugs.

“We are pleased to have supportive investors led by Mercia who are enabling us to progress the development of patch products that will bring significant benefits to patients across the globe.”