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Dr. Kamyar Hadian and Prof. Dr. Ulrike Protzer
Helmholtz Munich | ©Petra Nehmeyer; TU München | ©Astrid Eckert

Double Triumph for Helmholtz Munich: Two Researchers Honored with m4 Award from BioM

Awards & Grants, Molecular Targets and Therapeutics, VIRO,

Prof. Ulrike Protzer and Dr. Kamyar Hadian and their teams from Helmholtz Munich received the prestigious Bavarian m4 Award, a recognition of their exceptional contributions to the advancement of future medicine and two different groundbreaking research efforts at the center. The award, presented every two years by the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs, honors innovative projects with a primary focus on medical biotechnology. Each project wins 500,000 euros to support their efforts in addressing pressing medical issues. This prize was declared by BioM in collaboration with the Bavarian State Ministry of Economic Affairs, Regional Development, and Energy on October 24, 2023, at the Munich Residence.

The two exceptional researchers at Helmholtz Munich are committed to enhancing treatment options for diseases that urgently require innovative solutions. While Prof. Ulrike Protzer is on a mission to establish a therapeutic hepatitis B vaccine for an HBV cure, Dr. Kamyar Hadian is focused on revolutionizing the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). With their respective biomedical projects, they were able to impress the judges from among 31 strong applications submitted by research institutions across Bavaria.

Ulrike Protzer developed TherVacB, a promising therapeutic hepatitis B vaccine capable of reactivating antiviral immune responses and a promising solution to the global health challenge of chronic hepatitis B. Preclinical models have demonstrated its effectiveness, and initial clinical trials are set to begin soon. The m4 Award will play a vital role in facilitating the essential development stages required for the ultimate formulation of TherVacB, and preparations for the establishment of a spin-off company to drive further clinical development.

Kamyar Hadian's pioneering efforts are focused on the treatment of RA. His project has yielded first-in-class inhibitors that show promise in improving the outcome of RA treatment in preclinical models. With the support of the m4 Award, the project will optimize compounds and advance these toward clinical testing, potentially revolutionizing the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.

The groundbreaking work of Ulrike Protzer and Kamyar Hadian holds immense promise in advancing the treatment of hepatitis B and RA, offering new solutions to patients in need of innovative therapies.


More information

Read the full press release BioM here.

Check out more about Prof. Ulrike Protzer at the Institute of Virology and about the Hadian Group at the Research Unit Signaling and Translation.


Porträt Kayar Hadian

Dr. rer. nat. Kamyar Hadian

Deputy Director of the Research Unit Signaling and Translation / Group Leader Cell Signaling and Chemical Biology