Cyclodextrins to remove artery plaques formed during heart disease

Cyclarity Therapeutics (formerly known as Underdog Pharmaceuticals) is a spin-off company of SENS Research Foundation formed with the purpose of creating cyclodextrins to fight 7-ketocholesterol, a dangerous oxidated form of cholesterol that serves no useful purpose in the human body and that our macrophages cannot digest, leading to the formation of bloated foam cells and deadly atherosclerosis.

Underdog intends to use computational and synthetic chemistry to search through thousands of derivatives of cyclodextrin, a well-known and safe molecule, in order to discover the one that is best at removing 7-ketocholesterol from blood vessels and cells.

Co-founded by Matthew O’Connor, Ph.D. and Michael Kope of SRF, the company has received nearly 4 million dollars in seed funding in order to begin operations. Underdog successfully met with the Medicines and Health products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) of the UK to set the standards and endpoints of a Phase 1 trial, and in September 2021, it received the MHRA’s Innovation Passport through the Innovative Licensing and Access Pathway (ILAP), which has regulatory advantages and faster patient access. Also in September 2021, Underdog completed a $10 million funding round and indicated that it plans to enter clinical trials in 2023.