October 10, 2022, CarboHyde attending CPHI
October 8, 2022, Charity run for Bátor Tábor Fundation
Our board members and their families represented CarboHyde on the 37th Spar Marathon in Budapest. We dedicated this event to raising funds for Bátor Tábor, a special camp focusing on joy-based therapy for pediatric patients recovering from cancer and other devastating diseases.
We are extremely grateful for all the support provided by the donators and will continue to seek other opportunities to help patients in need by any means in our power.
September 30, 2022, WHAT IS THE STORY OF A PHARMA STARTUPPER?
To better understand the place and the goals of CarboHyde, a private preclinical pharma startup from the EU, a short interview was performed with József Tóth Ph.D., Founder, and CEO of CarboHyde
What’s your story, and how did you become an innovator in healthcare?
During the years I spent at Semmelweis University as a med student, all my favorite subjects originated from cell biology. I was eagerly waiting for physiology lectures where the professors explained to us how the signaling pathways and living cells work, and how they act together to form organs and the whole human body. Then later, during pharmacology courses, I was again fascinated to see how we can sometimes treat pathophysiological conditions by giving only one single molecule acting on one receptor. After finishing the Ph.D., my interest in applied pharmacology led me to specialize in anesthesia and intensive care, which is one of the fastest-growing fields of medicine. As an anesthetist and intensive care specialist, I could look closely at how one single molecule, namely Sugammadex, a carbohydrate derivate, revolutionized anesthesia safety. Meanwhile, I was always interested in entrepreneurship, and how a dedicated group of people can bring a new idea to the market. This process might look very easy to anyone, watching the nowadays popular startup TV shows, but now I can tell you, the reality cannot be further away from the truth. It is a very nice, rewarding, and challenging journey. So we established a company, and now here at CarboHyde, surrounded by world-class researchers, chemists, pharmacists, and engineers, I feel fortunate to have the opportunity to combine these two interests of mine.
Can you tell me a bit about your company, CarboHyde?
CarboHyde is a pharma start-up, developing carbohydrate-based APIs for different target indications and other innovative applications like gene delivery or using them in vaccines. We also see other companies with similar interests as an ecosystem and support them with our knowledge in this field as a contract research organization. We founded CarboHyde not long ago, but the senior colleagues have worked together in this field for 10+ years.
As a CRO in the pharma industry, we only focus on the most complex synthetic chemistry issues our fellow innovators face with their carbohydrate or cyclodextrin-based drug development programs.
Our main aim is to develop our own carbohydrate-based APIs, focusing on rare diseases and neurodegenerative CNS indications and an RNA delivery platform. We continuously looking for partners to collaborate on developing new therapeutic solutions in this field. So if any of our readers are one of them, they shouldn’t hesitate to contact us.
What I would like to highlight for the readers is my personal belief in the importance of the right company culture, especially because our innovation-focused company is based on our colleagues’ exceptional brain power. So we build a very flat, administration-free culture, where we spearhead values like love of work, autonomy, freedom, as well as results orientation and responsibility. Our internal processes are all transparent, and everyone completely understands our mission and what it takes to get there, then embraces the responsibility to make the right decisions. And we trust our people to make the right ones.
And why carbohydrates? What is so interesting in these molecule families?
Because my previous supervisor deals with lipids, my sister does research about proteins, and my brother-in-law is an expert on nucleic acids, so that remains for me (smiles). Of course, that’s just a joke. I think people underestimate the role of carbohydrates in physiological processes and simplify them as only energy sources or structural molecules, but the reality could not be farther from that. Due to their structural diversity and complexity, I believe these ubiquitous building blocks of life are one of the most challenging biomolecules to manipulate. Now there are widely used carbohydrate-based drug families on the market, like deoxy sugars or amino sugars. Yet, carbohydrate-based API development is still a fast-growing area, including special types of carbohydrates to treat rare diseases, like Niemann–Pick type C or Fabry disease. We are fond of these compounds, enjoy the challenge it takes to work with them, and believe that there is still a lot to learn in this area. Learning and, evolving are our daily feed.
What are the company’s short and longer-term goals?
Before answering your question, I want to highlight how proud I am of the results we have achieved this year already. It is important to talk about the future, but it is equally important to look back and be proud of what we have already achieved – for me, this provides a source of energy, like my morning coffee with a high dose of carbohydrates. So this year, we have already managed to attract some internationally renowned scientists into the team, expand our pipeline program, and successfully apply for an EU grant. I believe these are great results.
But as a real startupper, I am ready to talk about our plans for hours (smiles). The shorter version is, that our long-term goal is to hold 5+ patent families for different compounds, sponsor early-stage clinical trials and be a key-opinion leader in carbohydrate chemistry and drug development.
To achieve this, in the next 2-3 years, we will grow in size, strengthen our CRO arm and start focusing on our pipeline program. In addition, we have already been developing certain capabilities in-house, which we outsource at the moment – like carbohydrate analytics, which requires a kind of unique expertise.
As a pharma startupper, what advice do you have for others just starting out in this space?
First of all, do not underestimate the work ahead. Several very good books on the market can give useful advice on how to treat the expected difficulties; I read a lot of them and enjoyed them. But no matter how many books you read about those topics, new and new unexpected challenges will come across, and one person alone cannot deal with all of them. So let’s find those people who are smart, experts in their fields, but also whom you can get along with as human beings and who strongly believe in the projects you have. If you can gather people you can trust and can focus on each other’s strengths and enhance them, then together, sooner or later, you can handle these challenges. And when you feel exhausted, you should know and practice where you can have extra energy from – if it is your morning coffee with 3 spoons of carbohydrates or pursuing your hobby, it doesn’t matter.
September 22, 2022, CarboHyde started a science blog on carbs
At CarboHyde we decided to dedicate a subpage on our website to carbohydrate science and the latest fascinating discoveries in this field. If you wish, you can access it via this link:
Also, we plan to collect the news shared in a monthly newsletter, which you can subscribe to at the bottom of the main page.
#carbohydrates #blog #sciencecommunication #newsletter #glycotime
September 20, 2022, CarboHyde hires new COO
Tamás Vargadi, a pharmaceutical engineer experienced in radiopharmaceuticals, synthetic chemistry, quality control, industrial scaling, GMP production, and tech transfer of various carbohydrate-based pharma ingredients, has just joined our team.
“I started a brand new chapter in my life when I joined CarboHyde as a Chief Operating Officer. My main roles in the company are supporting all activities, from organic chemistry to business development. I want to make processes at CarboHyde easier and simpler for our partners and employees. I believe the team we have here will be able to achieve our common goals and build a successful company together.”
Tamas is an amazing personal and professional fit for our team, and we look forward to growing together. Welcome on board!
September 8, 2022, New talents on board
We are thrilled to introduce you László Ragányi (left) and Kristóf Felegyi, who are strengthening our #chemistry team and will participate in the challenging #carbohydrates #synthesis related to CarboHyde‘s pipeline and our work in GENEGUT.
I graduated as a chemist (MSc) from Eötvös Loránd University in 2019. My interest was in the synthesis of ferrocene derivatives. I have two years of experience in chromatography, mainly in gas chromatography. Later I was a synthetic research chemist at CycloLab for one year. My current interests are the synthesis and chromatography of carbohydrate derivatives.
In high school, I have always been fascinated by natural sciences, how molecules are synthesized and how they work, so I started studying chemical engineering in addition to the pharmaceutical sciences. After my master’s degree, I continued my studies at Semmelweis University as a Ph.D. student, where I first dealt with the synthesis of organic compounds; then, my interest turned to the in-depth chemical investigations of different mushrooms, isolating their characteristic metabolic products and determining their structure. After completing the experimental work, I came to Carbohyde, where I could return to the organic chemistry dear to my heart.’
August 23, 2022, Introducing our Chief Scientific Officer
Milo has 10+ years of experience in cyclodextrin chemistry. He was a senior research chemist at CycloLab. He developed many cyclodextrin-based nanocarriers with targeting functions and multimodal activities. He designed 30+ Sugammadex impurities and new cyclodextrins-based APIs. His current interests are the production of cationic amphiphilic cyclodextrins able to interact with nucleic acids and cross biological barriers (GENEGUT). His primary focus is the creation of carbohydrate-based APIs for unmet medical needs.
Milo will be our greatest help in the journey ahead, and we could not imagine a better partner to travel with!
August 23, 2022, Event – conference attendance
There is an excellent opportunity to meet several members of the CarboHyde team, including our CSO Milo Malanga Ph.D., at the Debrecen Colloquium on Carbohydrates starting August 24, 2022, and discuss science and collaboration opportunities.
August 16, 2022, Scientific Advisory Board
Ágnes Toth-Petroczy is a Research Group Leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics and the Center for Systems Biology Dresden. Her interdisciplinary lab combines computational methods with wet-lab experiments to advance our understanding of protein evolution. Current research highlights include studying and modeling protein synthesis errors, investigating proteins forming biomolecular condensates, and classifying the effects of mutations in disease-relevant genes. Previously, she worked as a bioinformatician at HMX – Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital Division of Genetics as part of a collaborative Mendelian disease gene discovery initiative and participated in the NIH Undiagnosed Diseases Network (UDN).
Her broad expertise in biochemistry, molecular evolution, structural bioinformatics, and clinical genetics will undoubtedly benefit the development of products at CarboHyde.
July 21, 2022, Scientific Advisory Board
It’s our honor to introduce the next scientific advisory board member at CarboHyde. Cristin Davidson is the project manager for Support Of Accelerated Research for Niemann-Pick C disease (SOAR-NPC) and a guest researcher at The National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland.
Her scientific pursuits involve the treatment of rare diseases, as she currently investigates gene therapy and other compounds for NPC disease in small animal models. Cristin was part of an academic/government/family/industry collaborative team that brought 2-hydroxypropyl-beta-#cyclodextrin to a clinical trial for NPC patients. One of her driving motivations is the rapid advancement of disease-modifying therapies for those with limited or no options.
We are over the moon to have you on board, Cristin!
July 10, 2022, Scientific Advisory Board
We are excited to present the following member of the CarboHyde family, joining the experts of the Scientific Advisory Board. Szabolcs Béni is a widely known expert in carbohydrate analysis and extraction from different plants whose knowledge will be one of our core assets in the progression of our pipeline.
Szabolcs is the vice-dean and department head of the Faculty of Pharmacy, Department of Pharmacognosy at Semmelweis University, who enjoys working with students while engaged in chemical research of various carbohydrates. Analytical method developments for the characterization of cyclodextrins, milk oligosaccharides, and glycosaminoglycans are in the focus of his interest. NMR spectroscopy, Mass Spectrometry, and various separation techniques are in his toolbox to tackle the issues raised by chemists and biologists for carbohydrate characterization to advance understanding of their functions.
June 29, 2022, New member of our company
We are happy to announce that Gergely Tóth will join the team of CarboHyde as a Strategic Director, responsible for the company’s financial, legal, and other functional areas.
Gergely has 2+ years of experience in the pharma sector; prior to that, he had worked in various roles in the energy industry.
“I Think This Is The Beginning Of A Beautiful Friendship!
I’m very excited to join a great Pharmaceutical startup, CarboHyde, as a Director of Strategy. I will be responsible for the financial, legal, and other functional areas. Here, we develop carbohydrate-based therapies and will help others to do so. Moreover, we are committed to building a TEAL-based company culture, which we believe will be a key strength of our company.”
Welcome on board, Gergely!
June 9, 2022, Scientific Advisory Board
We are proud to share the next member in the CarboHyde family, joining our excellent experts on the Advisory Board. Ákos Lőrincz has a complementary experience in physiology and immunology; we all respect and need to advance our pipeline most efficiently.
Ákos is an Assistant Professor at Semmelweis University, Institute of Physiology, and a practicing cardiologist. His scientific interest is the biology of extracellular vesicles, particularly the formation of immune cell-derived extracellular vesicles and their role in immune communication. He is also convinced that the general goal of basic research is to acquire knowledge that can be applied in clinical work; therefore, he is intensively studying these vesicles’ diagnostic and therapeutic potential.
Related to carbohydrates, the surface of cellular and subcellular biological structures (e.g., extracellular vesicles) is covered with carbohydrates. The role of the glycocalyx in the formation and addressing of vesicles has already been demonstrated. In his research, He is looking for the answer to whether media with different carbohydrate compositions can increase the stability of storage-sensitive vesicle structures.
Welcome on board, Ákos!
June 2, 2022, 20th International Cyclodextrin Symposium
The CarboHyde team is planning for its first conference attendances at the upcoming International Cyclodextrin Symposium (13-17th June, Sicily), where our team will deliver presentations on cyclodextrin-based therapeutic potential.
May 26, 2022, New Pipeline Asset
CarboHyde announces the development of a new pipeline asset in an undisclosed partnership: we will work on the optimization, scale-up and industrialization of a novel, carbohydrate-based non-viral gene delivery system which provided promising results in proof-of-concept preclinical studies. We expect the technology to be widely compatible with different oligonucleotides and become a safer alternative to currently used LNPs.
May 10, 2022 International Cyclodextrin Symposium
The cyclodextrin event of the year is around the corner with world-class speakers from all around the globe delivering talks on all kinds of topics related to our favorite sugars.
Tamas Sohajda from our advisory board talks about cyclodextrins as antiviral agents and drug delivery systems.
We hope to see many new faces there too!
Check out the schedule here: https://www.ismn.cnr.it/ics20/pdf/ICS_program_rev.2022_5_7.pdf
May 6, 2022, Scientific Advisory Board
We are happy to announce an expansion of the CarboHyde family. We have invited several world-renowned scientists and experts from different countries and institutions to our Scientific Advisory Board, who can help us in our challenging journey of developing carbohydrate-based therapeutic nutrition agents. We will introduce them one by one in the coming weeks.
Tamas Sohajda has a long professional history in the field of cyclodextrins – he was the head of R&D and CEO of CycloLab for 5+ years – widely experienced in chemistry, analysis, formulation, etc. regulatory affairs, industrialization, and therapeutic applications. We are honored that he accepted our invitation to support us through our upcoming preclinical and clinical development obstacles, feed us new ideas and improve existing ones.
Welcome on board, Tamas!