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June 27, 2013

The Humane Society of the United States Demonstrates Commitment to Replace Animal Testing by Investing in Hurel Corporation

The Humane Society of the United States, the nation’s largest animal protection organization, announced its investment in Hurel Corporation (“Hurel”), a leading developer of technology that can replace animals in drug development and chemical testing.

Hurel, a pioneer of “organ on a chip” in vitro systems for drug development, focuses on the production of 3-dimensional tissue cultures that simulate and predict the in vivo function of the liver and other organs.   Hurel delivers its products for use by researchers in their own laboratories, or alternatively, the researchers can send their compounds to Hurel for testing on a services basis. The HSUS’s funds will support original scientific research into new applications of Hurel’s cell culture technologies, as well as the commercial launch of Hurel’s first series of products.

The HSUS made its investment as part of a program to support companies whose technologies, products or services promote a “humane economy” and actively advance the animal protection goals of The HSUS.  Its investment in Hurel is The HSUS’s first ever in the area of 21st century biomedical science and technology.  Spring Mountain Capital, which recently led a $9.2 million financing effort for Hurel, has welcomed The HSUS as a participating co-investor. 

“This investment reflects our confidence that technologies like Hurel’s have the potential to greatly reduce the use of animals in drug development and chemical safety testing,” said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The HSUS.  “We are using our capital to align scientific innovation and animal protection and to support our role as a leader in finding alternatives to using animals that will ultimately lead to better medical treatments and end the suffering of animals in laboratories.”

Hurel CEO Robert Freedman said, “We are honored and gratified to receive the support of The Humane Society of the United States.  Gratified by The HSUS’ financial commitment, certainly; but equally by their recognition of Hurel’s potential to reduce the use of animals in drug development through the creation of more accurate, human-relevant in vitro prediction of a drug’s effects.  We are confident that Hurel’s technology constitutes the kind of game-changing tool for which researchers, regulators and patients have been waiting.” 

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