About Glycanostics

Company OverviewInovationsTeam

Company Overview

Glycanostics is an innovative start-up company established in 2017 to bring its revolutionary cancer diagnostics products to the US and EU markets. The company was founded by two remarkable scientists Jan Tkac, DSc and Tomas Bertok, PhD who got international recognition for their scientific works, prestigious grants and awards winners such as Scientists of the year (Slovakia), European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator grant, ERC Proof of Concept grant, Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions ITN, Qatar National Research Fund.


Diagnostics is done by the analysis of glycan changes on specific proteins like a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) in a non-invasive way i.e. directly in human serum. Thus, molecular changes of the proteins like PSA are applied for cancer diagnostics. The tests are designed to help doctors to make a proper decision about a need to perform a biopsy or to check the patient after the biopsy which misses 30% of prostate cancer patients. Prostate cancer disease can be treatable and early diagnostics is the key!

Glycanostics product portfolio includes prostate cancer kit and home test. The cancer kit is in the pre-clinical validation stage, so far showing 95+% accuracy (100% assay sensitivity and 94% assay specificity), which is much more accurate than the most commonly used PSA test (83% assay sensitivity and 39% assay specificity).

Innovations

The glycomics after genomics and proteomics is often denoted as the third alphabet of molecular biology. Glycans possess much higher combinatorial potential than nucleic acids and proteins, so glycans can carry and code biological information at high density.

The “glycocode deciphering“ is done by analysis of glycan changes on specific proteins like a prostate specific antigen (PSA) in a non-invasive way i.e. directly in human serum. Thus, molecular changes of the proteins like PSA are applied for cancer diagnostics. The tests will be designed to help urologists making a proper decision about a need to perform a biopsy.

Glycanostics is developing assay kits for other type of cancer, ex. breast cancer, and non-oncological diseases as well.

Intellectual Property

IP portfolio currently covers a PCT patent application directed to the concept of the invention (translated into method, use and kits claims) including diagnosis of prostate cancer and other types of cancer by glycoprofiling.

Team

Ing. Eva Kovacova, FCCA

CEO

Mrs. Eva Kovacova joined Glycanostics s.r.o. as a Chief Executive Officer in January 2021. She has over 17 years of executive, finance, M&A and business development experience in pharmaceutical industry. Thanks to her thorough understanding of complexities of pharmaceutical M&A and licensing process, post M&A integration process, regulatory specifics, warehousing and distribution licenses, pharmaceutical business valuation, tax, accounting, treasury and legal implications of various deal structures, IP transfers and artwork change she became a highly recognized M&A consultant preferred by some of the largest pharmaceutical companies. 

Previous Roles and Projects

  • Integration Lead responsible for joint venture (JV) creation between GSK and Pfizer in the region of EMEA and Latin America; 
  • EMEA Integration Lead responsible for carve-out of LifeScan from J&J; 
  • M&A Integration Lead responsible for JV creation between GSK and Novartis in the region of EMEA and Latin America; 
  • Corporate Development Director at GSK leading various M&A projects in value from a few £’m to in excess of £1bn;
  • Licensing Director at GSK, Central Europe; 
  • Finance Director at GSK Slovakia, responsible for finance, controlling, reporting, logistics, distribution, procurement, compliance and IT.

Jan Tkac, DSc

CSO

Dr. Jan Tkac is known worldwide for his scientific
contribution. He is the winner of many prestigious grants and awards such as
Scientist of the year (Slovakia), European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator
grant, ERC Proof of Concept grant, Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions ITN, Qatar National Research Fund.

Dr. Tkac professional background includes more than 20 years of scientific work in biotechnology industry in the world most prestigious universities. As a team leader he is responsible for development of various types of bioanalytical methods and assays protocols with focus on bioreceptive interface engineering for diagnostic purposes.

Together with Dr. Tomas Bertok, Dr. Tkac co-founded Glycanostics
in 2017.

Awards

  • 2006 / Nanochallenge
    2006 – world competition of business plans, winner
  • 2015 / Small medal of Samuel Mikovini from the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport
  • 2016 / Scientist of the Year of the Slovak Republic
  • 2018 / A prize of Minister for Education for scientific team of the year
  • 2019 / Team leader - price of SAS for the scientific team of the year
  • 2019 / ESET Science award

Scientific outputs

  • 110+ research papers, 2800+ citations,
    6 book chapters, 1 book, h-index 31, 7 PhD. students

Grants as the PI

  • 2003 – 2006 / Marie-Curie Individual Fellowship
  • 2012 – 2015 / APVV national grant
  • 2013 – 2017 / European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator grant
  • 2014 – 2017 / Qatar National Research Fund
  • 2014 – 2017 / Marie-Sklodowska Curie Actions ITN
  • 2018 – 2022 / APVV national grant
  • 2018  – 2021 / Ministry of Health of the Slovak Republic grant
  • 2018 – 2021/ Marie-Sklodowska Curie Actions ITN
  • 2018 – 2020 / European Research Council (ERC) Proof of Concept grant
  • 2019 / SME Instrument 1 grant
  • 2019 – 2022 / Ministry of Health of the Slovak Republic grant

Tomas Bertok, PhD, Eur Ing

Innovation chief

Dr. Tomas Bertok is focusing on technology validation, performing pre-clinical and restrospective validation studies, implementation of novel and innovative immobilization and assay protocols to design early stage diagnostic kits.

For his remarkable scientific achievements Dr. Bertok was listed in Forbes Slovakia 30 under 30, was awarded by the president of the Slovak Republic for research activities in life sciences and also won BASF Slovakia and Danubius Young Scientist Award (from Austrian Ministry of Science).

Together with Dr. Jan Tkac, Dr. Bertok co-founded Glycanostics in 2017.

Awards

  • Top student personality of the year 2013/2014
  • Award of the President of the Slovak Republic for research activities in life sciences
  • Danubius Young Scientist Award 2016, Ministry of Science, Research and Economy, Austria
  • Forbes Slovakia 30 under 30 in 2016
  • Scientist of the Year under 35 in 2016
  • Different institutional awards (BASF, Metrohm, Czech and Slovak academies of sciences)

Scientific outputs

  • 40+ research papers, 800+ citations, 3 book chaters, 2 books, h-index 17, 2 Ph.D. students Grants

Grants

  • Individual national grants for young scientists (Intenda, Stefan Schwarz grant, SlovakResearch and Development Agency)