Mission Bay Capital has placed a bet on Symbiome, creators of a skin care range intended to emulate our ancestor’s microbiome.

US-based skincare product brand Symbiome has collected $15m of funding from a consortium involving Mission Bay Capital, a venture capital firm aligned with University of California (UC), Women’s Wear Daily reported yesterday.

The round was led by True Ventures with further contributions from Bold Capital Partners, Gisev Family Office and angel investors.

Founded in 2017, Symbiome is preparing to launch a seven-product skincare range formulated with dermatological microbes thought to have been present in ancient humans.

The microbes spare the need to directly apply artificial skin grafting chemicals such as vitamin A, a staple of some prescription topical skin creams.

Symbiome hopes the approach will prevent inflammation disorders such as acne that our ancestors do not appear to have suffered.

The funding will go to continued scientific research and product development as Symbiome looks to build up a community of enthusiasts for its product.

Symbiome will market the goods direct to consumers via its website, starting with a skin cleanser called Renewal next month and with additional products slated to debut from early November.

Larry Weiss, founder and chief scientific officer at Symbiome, said: “What we can do is figure out what [the former skin-residing microbes] were making, grow them up, get them to make these things, and apply the benefits of re-engraftment without actually trying to get re-engraftment to occur.”

Mission Bay Capital is the early-stage venture capital arm of California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences (QB3), a research and commercialisation institute of UC San Francisco, UC Berkeley and UC Santa Cruz. It raised a $60m third fund in September 2019.