25 May EraGen gets $250,000 state loan to revamp manufacturing facility
Madison, Wis. — The state is giving EraGen Biosciences Inc. a $250,000 Technology Development Loan to help it upgrade its manufacturing facility for cystic fibrosis tests.
EraGen’s $1 million improvement plan is expected to create about 75 jobs, according to a joint announcement by the firm and Governor Jim Doyle.
The loan will help EraGen meet the demand resulting from a worldwide distribution deal with Bayer HealthCare for its cystic fibrosis tests. That deal was announced last week.
“One of the major drivers for obtaining and applying for that loan was obviously anticipating that Bayer deal,” said Regina Reynolds, director of marketing at EraGen. She said the improved facility would also meet growing demand for other products.
The cystic fibrosis test looks for genes that can cause the body to produce thick, clogging mucus in the lungs and lead to life-threatening lung infections. Median life expectency is in the 30s, and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation estimates that 30,000 people in the United States and 60,000 worldwide are affected.
Technology Development Loans from the Department of Commerce provide up to 75 percent of the costs of projects that the department or a peer-review panel determine to have merit. The loans are provided at fixed rates below market and require collateral.