Calvert Holdings, the parent organization of two life science-related companies, is launching a venture fund focused on acquiring and developing early-stage drug candidates.

Calvert BioCapital Fund, which was launched on Tuesday, will be run by Michael Recny, a former executive with biopharmaceutical firm Trimeris. Recny is a co-founder and managing director of the fund.

The fund will work with Calvert Laboratories, a toxicology lab, and Calvert Laboratories, a contract research organization operated by Calvert Holdings.

Calvert Holdings is providing the initial funding for Calvert BioCapital. However, the amount of the funding was not disclosed. The fund is seeking additional investors.

“We have been very active in working with young biotechnology companies and technology transfer offices at leading academic institutions to leverage Calvert’s preclinical development expertise to add value to several early stage technologies” said Russ McLauchlan, the chairman and chief executive officer of Calvert Holdings.

“The response to our business model has been exceptional, and we have successfully advanced several novel compounds via this route,” he added. “The logical extension to this process is for Calvert Holdings to partner with new investors using the Calvert BioCapital Fund to help these companies and researchers further advance their technologies prior to traditional exit points.”

Recny. who has worked in the biotech industry for 23 years, was vice president of corporate development at Trimeris.