OptiBiotix appoints Dr Sofia Kolyda as new Director of Research and Development


Dr Sofia Kolyda has been appointed to the board of OptiBiotix Health, a world leader in the development of microbiome modulating products, as Director of Research & Development. This appointment demonstrates OptiBiotix’s continued commitment to pioneering microbiome research and the development of innovative products to alleviate global health issues, such as obesity and high cholesterol. Dr Kolyda will take up her position with immediate effect.

Dr Kolyda was previously OptiBiotix’s Head of Research, and her expertise has been instrumental in the development of OptiBiotix’s technology through laboratory studies, human studies and manufacturing scale up. This has allowed the Company to create a rich pipeline of award-winning products, as well as winning best scientific publication at ProBiota in both 2017 and 2018.

OptiBiotix has established itself as a global leader in both targeted microbiome modulation, and the development of natural high intensity sweeteners and sweet healthy fibres (SweetBiotix®) as alternatives to sugar and existing artificial sweeteners. OptiBiotix’s strong science and deep pipeline of products has already led to agreements with a number of global corporates, including with Tata for its microbiome modulating cholesterol-reduction prebiotic (LPGOS), and two SweetBiotix® agreements, the first with one of the world’s largest suppliers of nutritional products and the second with one of the world’s largest providers of dairy products.

Given the high level of interest in OptiBiotix’s current products, particularly SweetBiotix®, and the potential for further partnerships, Dr Kolyda will take on responsibility for leading development programmes with current and future corporate partners.

Stephen O’Hara, CEO of OptiBiotix, commented: “We are pleased to recognise the significant contribution Sofia has made in the development of OptiBiotix’s science into award winning products by offering her a position on the Board. Given the high level of interest we are seeing in our microbiome modulating and SweetBiotix® technologies, this appointment provides Board leadership to enable OptiBiotix to meet multiple partner needs and to fully exploit all opportunity in this area of growing industry and commercial interest.”

Prior to joining OptiBiotix, Dr Kolyda completed her PhD and was a post-doctoral research associate at the University of Reading’s Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences. During this time, she published numerous papers on the modulation of the human microbiome, as well as undertaking contract work for organisations such as GlaxoSmithKline PLC, Proctor & Gamble, and Tate & Lyle PLC.

About OptiBiotix

OptiBiotix was formed in March 2012 by Stephen O’Hara to develop compounds which modify the human microbiome – the collective genome of the microbes in the body – to prevent and manage human disease.

The aim of OptiBiotix is to discover and develop microbial strains, compounds and formulations, which modulate the human microbiome and can be used as food ingredients and supplements or active compounds for the prevention and management of human metabolic diseases, examples of which include obesity, cholesterol and lipid distribution and diabetes.

OptiBiotix has established a pipeline of microbiome modulators that can impact on lipid and cholesterol management, energy harvest and appetite suppression. The development pipeline is fuelled by its proprietary OptiScreen® and OptiBiotic® platform technologies designed to identify metabolic pathways and compounds that impact on human physiology and bring potential health benefits. These platforms are applicable across a wider range of other human diseases.