- Funding to Date*
Melanin is the pigment that tans our skin and makes our hair dark, but new research keeps coming out about melanin as a supermaterial and its wide variety of applications: blocking ionizing gamma radiation, acting as organic semiconductors for implantable electronics, and even generating electricity as a solar fuel cell and storing it in rechargable batteries. The primary problem is that melanin is too expensive to make these Industrialapplications scalable.
Avisa Myko is able to produce melanin from a proprietary strain of fungus. Whereas every is able to make it at $400/gram, they can make it at $0.20 per gram. They’ve validated their process at 50L scale while at IndieBio and they’re using the radiation blocking properties of melanin to formulate a suncreen, to replace the sunscreens that are toxic for the marine ecosystem. They are currently looking for partners for turning their melanin into dyes and radiation shielding (think: space).