BioEntrepreneurship Summit 2017
Oct 10-11, 2017
Philipp Baaske co-founded NanoTemper together with Stefan Duhr, a company to address challenges researchers were facing with the ultimate goal of helping to move science forward. NanoTemper was started in 2008 after Stefan and Philipp met at Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich. At the time, the effect of thermophoresis was not known within the Life Sciences community, but Stefan and Philipp knew that it was important. Realizing the shortcomings of current protein research techniques, they came up with a method, MicroScale Thermophoresis that was enormously sensitive, and would bring researchers one step closer to developing better drugs faster. Now, NanoTemper has over 120 employees in 10 offices around the world including Munich, Germany; Cambridge, UK; Kraków, Poland; Copenhagen, Denmark; South San Francisco and Boston, USA; Sao Paulo, Brazil; St. Petersburg, Russia; Bangalore, India and Beijing, China.
Philipp Baaske studied Biophysics at University Bayreuth, did his PhD at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich and is CEO of NanoTemper since its foundation. He won the STEP Award, the “Deutsche Innovationspreis”, the “Deutsche Gründerpreis” and recently his company NanoTemper was selected as TOP100 Innovator of the year.
Constanze Backhaus is HR Business Partner for Startups at UnternehmerTUM Innovation and Business Creation Center. She supports tech startups in attracting and retaining the right talent. She teaches how mission-based recruiting, innovative leadership, and collaborative team culture foster a successful startup with empowered and motivated employees. She also gives guidance on lean HR, employer branding, team design, compensation, entrepreneurship behavior and manages the Startup Talents Pool at UnternehmerTUM.
Constanze Backhaus studied International Management at HEC Paris. Before joining UnternehmerTUM, she led consulting projects and departments for tech, pharma, and life sciences corporations in Paris. In 2016, she moved to Munich to build the HR department of a social Saas Startup.
Dior Baumjohann, PhD is a Technology Manager at Ascenion GmbH. Ascenion is an independent technology transfer company working at the interface between science and business with exclusive partnerships with numerous life-science research institutions of the Helmholtz and Leibniz Associations, the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, the Hannover Medical School and associated organizations for translational research. In addition, Ascenion actively guides and supports spin-offs through foundation and growth.
Prior to joining Ascenion, Dior Baumjohann advised and supported scientists of the Max Planck Society in technology transfer at Max-Planck-Innovation and at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) she was responsible for intellectual property management. She holds a master’s degree in virology from Harvard University as well as a PhD in cell biology from the University of Bern.
Florian Becke is a start-up consultant at TUM and is particularly interested in growth-oriented technology companies from the sciences. He is a molecular biologist by profession and earned his doctorate in cell biology with a strong focus in human immunology. He has been engaged in start-up consultancy and technology transfer for over 15 years. He is a lecturer for new venture creation, innovation management and technology transfer and was most recently CEO of CAST GmbH, the start-up center of the Tyrolean universities.
After being a consultant and senior leader at McKinsey & Co for 28 years Andreas Biagosch is now engaging as Business Angel and is involved in a few fonds like UnternehmerTUM, earlybird and b-to-v. Besides he serves families in their boards and advisory groups like Hinduja/Ashok Leyland and Hinduja Finance, Wacker Chemie, Lürssen, Aixtron and Athos. He also teaches an advanced case seminar at TUM and supports the Deutsches Museum in its supervisory board.
His educational background is mechanical engineering and business administration and his family background is entrepreneurial.
LMU Spin-off Services
Michael Blind is start-up manager at the Spin-off Service of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München. As member of the technology transfer office (Kontaktstelle für Forschungs- und Technologietransfer, KFT), he is responsible for coaching spin-off teams in the sectors of biotechnology, medicinal technology and chemistry.
Michael Blind worked in several management positions for biotechnology start-ups prior to joining the Spin-off Service in 2013. Besides, he works as consultant for established life science companies and is juror for the Science4Life BP competition. He studied biology and did his PhD in the department of biochemistry at the Gene Centre of the LMU München.
Gerhard Frank holds a doctoral degree in biology and has been working as a project manager and start-up consultant at the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (IGZ) in Würzburg since 2012. From his previous professional career, he has extensive experience in the areas of patents, technology transfer and early-stage financing of high-tech companies. The IGZ Würzburg is the largest incubator of lower Franconia with a focus on the life sciences.
Max Planck Innovation
Astrid Giegold is a senior consultant for start-up companies and responsible for portfolio management. She has supported many spin-offs during the seed phase and initial financing and also – as part of the portfolio management for the Max Planck Society – during subsequent financing rounds.
Prior to joining Max Planck Innovation, Astrid Giegold was responsible for biotechnology business development and acquisition at Berlin Business Development Corporation (Wirtschaftsförderung Berlin GmbH).
Astrid Giegold completed her degree in business administration at Cologne University. She then worked at the department of economics at the University of Leipzig. Her research focus was on international strategies and on economic, legal and socio-cultural framework conditions for biotechnology companies.
Astrid Giegold joined Max Planck Innovation in August 2000.
Katja Götschel is project manager at German Accelerator and coordinates the processes of the programs German Accelerator Life Sciences and German Accelerator Tech. In autumn 2015, she contributed to the establishment of German Accelerator Life Science program in Germany. Currently, she is working on the expansion of the program to Southeast Asia.
Philip D. Gregory, D. Phil., has served as Chief Scientific Officer of bluebird bio since June 2015. Prior to joining bluebird he was at Sangamo BioSciences, Inc., where he held multiple leadership positions, most recently serving as Chief Scientific Officer and Senior Vice President, Research. Philip Gregory has led pioneering research in gene therapy and genome editing and was named by Thompson Reuters as one of “The World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds 2014” and “Most Cited Researchers 2015”. He served as a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Keystone Symposia from 2009 to 2015, and the ASGCT Advisory Council from 2016. Before joining the biotechnology industry Philip Gregory was at the University of Munich, Germany, where he studied the role of chromatin structure in gene regulation. He earned a D. Phil. in biochemistry from the University of Oxford (Keble College) and holds a B.Sc. in microbiology from the University of Sheffield.
Thomas Hanke is currently leading and expanding a portfolio of strategic academic partnerships at Evotec, including the first-in-class accelerator LAB282 in Oxford. From November 2013 to November 2016, he was responsible for scientific advancement and commercial licensing of Evotec’s preclinical R&D projects in the areas of inflammation and immuno-oncology, with a particular focus on building high-value, performance based drug discovery alliances with academia and pharma.
From 2007 to 2013, Thomas Hanke was Sourcing Director at the Biopharmaceuticals Research Unit of Novo Nordisk, where he identified and evaluated partnering opportunities related to compounds, targets and technologies within haemophilia, autoimmune/inflammatory diseases, growth disorders and protein technologies. At Novo Nordisk, Thomas Hanke initiated a multitude of agreements with academic institutions and biotech companies both in Europe and the US.
Prior to joining Novo Nordisk, he was co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer at the German biotech company TeGenero, where he headed the R&D efforts to develop first-in-class immunomodulatory monoclonal antibodies (2002-2007).
Preceding his entrepreneurial activities, Thomas Hanke was group leader and Assistant Professor for Immunobiology at the University of Würzburg (1999-2002) following a PostDoc at the University of California in Berkeley where he researched basic cellular immunology (1996-1999). Thomas Hanke received his Ph.D. in Biology from the University of Würzburg in 1995. He is (co-) author of approx. 30 scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals.
Today, Thomas Hanke has 20+ years of leadership experience in research and drug development in academia, biotech and pharma. Fostering innovation and continuous improvement, Thomas Hanke manages cross-functional teams as an assessor / developer, sets directions and builds trust in a company.
Andreas Huber is Scientific Director Life Science and Senior Investment Manager at Bayern Kapital. His background is in biology which he studied at the Technical (TUM) and the Ludwig Maximilians University (LMU) in Munich. Additionally, he obtained a degree in Business Administration and Economics. Prior to Bayern Kapital he worked as an Analyst for a Munich-based Venture Capital company and as Business Development Manager with a Medtech-Software-Start-up.
Bayern Kapital is a Venture Capital company, founded in 1995 by the Bavarian government. and invests- always together with other investors- in young, innovative high-tech companies in Bavaria. Since 1995 Bayern Kapital has invested over 250m EUR in more than 250 companies, with a focus on Life Science and IT/Internet Start-ups. Bayern Kapital currently has 340m EUR under management and received new funding of almost 200m EUR including the new Growth Fund (“Wachstumsfonds”).
Marcus Irsfeld has co-founded medifundo with Peter Biewald in 2016. Medifundo is a crowdinvesting platform with a focus on life science companies. The investment offers are primarily presented to health care professionals, scientists, medical engineers or other persons working in the life science industry. Since 2009, he is working as a virtual CFO for companies in different sectors, with a strong focus in the life sciences. From 2001 to 2009, he was CFO of Trigen GmbH (formerly ProCorde GmbH) and board member of Trigen Holdings AG. Before he worked in different industries with a strong international focus, including a fraud audit project in China. Marcus Irsfeld studied business administration at the University of Münster.
Helmholtz Zentrum München
Dr. Annette Janz is currently heading the Innovation Management department at Helmholtz Zentrum München. The team is responsible for the funding and project management of drug discovery projects, the patent portfolio management and for commercialization of intellectual property of Helmholtz Zentrum München. Annette Janz studied Biotechnology at the Technical University of Braunschweig and conducted her diploma thesis at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Institute in Seattle, USA. After that, she received her PhD from the Ludwig-Maximilians-University and the Helmholtz Zentrum München with a focus on virology and immunology. She has research experience in pharma and biotech industry as well as expertise in project portfolio management and business development. Annette Janz also holds a Master of Management degree from Malik Management Zentrum St. Gallen.
NEO New Oncology
Andreas Jenne is co-founder and managing director of NEO New Oncology, a molecular diagnostics company recently acquired by Siemens Healthcare. Prior to joining NEO New Oncology, he worked in various management positions in the biotechnology sector. From 2000 to 2005, he was CEO of a biotech company focusing on drug discovery and development. In 2006 he founded Kinaxo, a service company supporting the development of targeted cancer drugs. After selling Kinaxo to Evotec in 2011, he served as Executive Vice President of Evotec’s biomarker business. In 2012 Andreas Jenne co-founded Blackfield AG which later became NEO New Oncology. Andreas Jenne holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the Maximilians-University in Munich. He is chairman of the board of directors of PreOmics and SciMab and member of the investment committee of the High-Tech-Gründerfonds.
After studying mathematics and physics at the LMU in Munich (PHD in mathematics) Peter Jochum founded the software company Softron GmbH in 1984. Within 15 years he grew Softron into a fully featured chromatography supplier with 120 employees in 5 countries. After selling his company to Dionex Corp in 1999 he became Vice President HPLC at Dionex where he was responsible for its worldwide liquid chromatography business. 2 years after Dionex was acquired by Thermo-Fisher in 2011 Peter Jochum resigned and works as a business angel since then. He is holding several investments in biotech companies.
Christian Jung joined Wellington Partners in 2016 as a Principal in the Life Sciences Team.
He obtained his MSc degree in Molecular Biotechnology from the Technical University of Munich and was awarded a PhD with distinction in Medical Science and Technology from the Technical University of Munich for his work on patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cells. The key articles generated in the context of his PhD were published in the New England Journal of Medicine, EMBO Molecular Medicine and FASEB Journal and have so far been cited more than 1000 times. In 2013, the thesis was recognized with the “Outstanding PhD thesis award” by the Luxembourg National Research Fund. During the course of his PhD, Christian Jung was supporting the Life Science Team of Atlas Venture in Munich.
Prior to joining Wellington, Christian was a Senior Investment Manager with High-Tech Gründerfonds, the largest german seed investor with 576 Mio. € under management, where he completed and led the early-stage investments in coramaze technologies, WISEneuro, Amal Therapeutics, CuneSoft, PS Biotech, perora, Senostic, Rigontec and Dolosys. Christian was serving as a Board Director at coramaze technologies , as well as a Board Observer at Amal, WISEneuro and Rigontec.
Life Sciences Partners
Karin Kleinhans, PhD joined LSP in 2015 as an associate. Karin provides in-depth analytical support to the LSP investment team at all stages of the investment process. She is involved in a number of LSP corporate projects as well.
Prior to joining LSP, Karin Kleinhans was an associate in an international patent law firm where she was involved in all aspects of the patent life cycle for international clients from the biotech industry. Previously, she gained experience in clinical trials and regulatory affairs within pharmaceutical drug development. Before, Karin Kleinhans was a researcher at the Max-Planck Department for Stem Cell Aging and the Institute of Molecular Medicine at the University Ulm. Her research focused on the basic mechanisms of cellular and organismal aging, specifically on stem cell aging. In particular, she focused her research on the impact of DNA damage and repair on stem cell aging and regeneration. Karin Kleinhans participated as a speaker in scientific meetings and lead scientific collaborations with world leading experts in the stem cell and aging field. She authored a number of scientific publications and book chapters in renowned journals. Karin Kleinhans received her PhD from the International Graduate School in Molecular Medicine in Ulm funded by the Excellence Initiative of the German Federal and States Governments. She was awarded her Bachelor`s and Master`s Degree in Molecular Medicine where she combined medical studies with scientific research training.
Hightech Corporate Services
Michael Kring is founder and CEO of High Tech Corporate Services GmbH, an operative services provider, specialized in establishment, structuring and management of administrative and financial divisions of start-ups and high-growth companies. He has over 20 years industry experience and worked in a lot of Management positions in several start-up and private equity companies. High Tech Corporate Services GmbH offers support from accounting to financed planning, from Controlling to complicated business projects in part time and project related.
Bayerische Patentallianz (BayPAT)
Sarah Krüger, PhD joined Bayerische Patentallianz in 2012 and leads the Life Sciences Licensing Team. Bayerische Patentallianz is the central patent and marketing agency to foster technology transfer of 33 Bavarian universities, university hospitals and universities of applied sciences. Under the umbrella of the Bavarian Research and Innovation Agency (BayFIA), Bayerische Patentallianz is a full-service technology management provider offering services in the area of technology transfer, IP management and commercialization.
Sarah Krüger manages a large portfolio of projects and patents including biotechnology, diagnostics, medical technology and digital health, and has initiated, negotiated and closed numerous licensing deals with both large multinational and medium size companies. She has a PhD in chemistry and gained more insight into European patent rights, receiving a patent counsel degree from the University of Hagen.
High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF)
Lena Krzyzak, PhD joined High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF) in 2016 as an Investment Manager. HTGF is Germany’s most active seed stage investor. With about EUR 820 million under management in three funds, it provides financing for technology-driven companies active in a wide range of fields, including robotics, IoT and energy, Medtech and Biotech, chemicals and software. Investors in this public-private partnership include the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy, the KfW, and strategic corporate investors. Lena focuses her investment activities on the life sciences including biotechnology, diagnostics, medical technology and digital health. Lena studied molecular biology in Göttingen, Umeå (Sweden), Erlangen and Singapore and obtained a PhD within a Fast-track PhD program at the Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nürnberg in Immunology.
Elmar Maier is the co-founder and CEO of iOmx Therapeutics AG. From 2008-2016, he has been working as a freelance consultant for various biotech companies in strategy and corporate development and has successfully negotiated several large cooperations for his customers. Before that he was co-founder and board member of GPC Biotech AG for eleven years in the area of business development. Maier holds a PhD in Chemistry and worked scientifically from 1991-1997 at the Cancer Research Center ICRF in London and at the MPI for Molecular Genetics in Berlin.
Sebastian Meier-Ewert has co-founded iOmx and is Chief Executive Officer since 2016. He was a Managing Director for MPM Capital from 2012 -2016 . He is a seasoned biotechnology entrepreneur and executive. He has founded a number of companies focused on drug discovery, technology development, consulting and investing in the life science industry. He co-founded GPC Biotech in 1997 and as CSO helped build the company into a leading public European biotech company in the field of oncology drug discovery and development. Sebastian received his B.Sc. in Biochemistry from University College London and conducted his postgraduate research at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund, London (Ph.D.) and the Max-Planck-Institute for Molecular Genetics in Berlin.
Gitte Neubauer is a scientific founder of Cellzome. She graduated from Imperial College, London in Biochemistry and completed her PhD thesis at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg in proteomics, a technology which formed the basis for the foundation of Cellzome in 2000. As part of the Cellzome leadership team, Gitte Neubauer built and ran different functions in the company before she took over leadership of Cellzome when the company was acquired by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in 2012. Beyond her responsibility for leading Cellzome, Neubauer serves on GSK’s Technology Investment Board and the Scientific Advisory Board of GSK’s Trust in Science Collaboration with the Butantan Institute in Brazil. She is a Director of the Board of BioPro Baden-Württemberg, an agency providing support to the life sciences sector and the Center of European Economic Research (Mannheim). In 2011, Neubauer was awarded the inaugural EU Women Innovator's prize by José Manuel Barroso, president of the European commission, for the translation of her academic research into commercial application. In 2014, she received the honorary economy medal of Baden-Württemberg.
James Peyer is the co-founder and Managing Partner of Apollo Ventures, an early stage life science investment fund investing in Europe and the US focused exclusively on breakthrough therapeutics arising from the study of the biology of aging.
Before Apollo, James Peyer worked with McKinsey & Company in New York, where he focused on building new biotech companies and developing strategies for commercializing cell therapies. He specialized on assisting clients with challenges facing clinical technologies with novel modes of action and substantial development hurdles.
During his doctoral studies, James Peyer co-founded and ran Genotyp, the first biotech company funded through Kickstarter.com. He earned his doctorate in stem cell biology at University of Texas Southwestern in Dallas, where he was a National Science Foundation GRFP Fellow. There he invented new ways of statistically analyzing three dimensional relationships between stem cells and their environments. James Peyer earned his bachelor's with special honors from the University of Chicago with a degree in Immunology.
Holger Reithinger is a Partner at Forbion Capital Partners. After working as a Product Manager with Biometra/ Whatman, he started his career in Venture Capital in 1997 as an Investment Manager at Technologieholding VC GmbH (acquired by the 3i Group in early 2000). Following this assignment, he became Principal and later Partner at Global Life Science Ventures. Holger Reithinger has served on the Boards of numerous life sciences companies including Epigenomics (IPO 2004), MBT (assets sold to Medigene AG), 4SC (IPO 2005), NeurogesX (IPO 2007), Fibrex Medical (assets licensed to Ikaria Inc.), Agendia BV, Santaris A/S (sold to Roche) and Rigontec GmbH (sold to MSD). He holds board seats at Curetis N.V. (IPO 2015), Cellnovo S.A. (IPO 2015), Allecra Therapeutics GmbH and catalYm GmbH.
Oxford University Innovation
Richard Reschen is a Senior Technology Transfer Manager in the Licencing & Ventures group of Oxford University Innovation (OUI). OUI is one of the world’s leading technology transfer organisations and is responsible for commercialising novel technologies arising from the world-class research at Oxford University. Richard is a key member of the Pharma/Biotech team and specialises in commercialising technologies in this sector. He manages a large portfolio of projects and patents, and has initiated, negotiated and closed numerous licensing deals with both large multinational and medium size companies. He has also managed the formation of 3 spinout companies, most recently Oxford NanoImaging Ltd. Prior to this Richard worked as a Business Development Manager at the University of Cambridge, and in management consultancy. Richard has a PhD in Genetics from the University of Cambridge.
Carsten Rudolph is CEO of BayStartUP GmbH. He has years of experience in leading industry and consulting positions and knows the German and international startup scene by heart. Prior to becoming CEO of BayStartUP, Carsten Rudolph was project director of Microsoft Germany’s High-Tech founders initiative "unternimm was.“ He also successfully set up an IT Startup Company as CEO. His first career steps were as sales director at Siemens AG and senior consultant at McKinsey & Co. Carsten Rudolph is a doctor of electrical engineering. BayStartUP offers a broad range of services for founders, business angels and industry representatives. Among others, the company organizes business plan competitions, startup coachings and networking events for founders and investors.
Prof. Rübsamen-Schaeff was the founder and the CEO of AiCuris from 2006 until 2015. She is now Chair of its Board. AiCuris is a German Biopharma company dedicated to the research and development of drugs against infectious diseases (viruses and multi-resistant bacteria).
Before founding AiCuris, Helga Rübsamen-Schaeff was SVP at Bayer, heading Bayer´s Infectious Disease Discovery from 1993 onwards. In her preceding academic career, she held the position of Scientific and Executive Director of the Chemotherapeutical Research Institute Georg-Speyer-Haus in Frankfurt working in cancer research (tyrosine kinases) and HIV.
She is presently a member of the Board of Partners of E. Merck KG and Chair of Merck´s Research Council as well as a member of the Supervisory Board of 4SC AG. She is also serves in the Scientific Panel on Health (SPH) for the Framework Program Horizon 2020 of the EU.
Pascal Schäfer is an innovation coach and digital brand strategist supporting start-ups and companies building strong and engaging brand stories to connect with their audiences. As former Head of Open Innovation Products at Sky Germany he was responsible for the successful development of prototypes and products within Play – the open innovation hub by Sky. In 2013 he started working for the Munich based entertainment company and was the main driver in setting up and launching Play with the goal to open Sky’s innovation process. He started his career as program manager at maxdome, the video on demand provider owned by the ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG. Pascal Schäfer studied at the Media University in Stuttgart, as well as at the Griffith Business School in Brisbane, Australia.
Dominic Schmidt is a Partner in Syncona’s Life Sciences team. Prior to joining Syncona, he worked for strategy consultancy L.E.K. Consulting. Dominic received his Ph.D. from the Department of Oncology at the University of Cambridge, where he was a Cancer Research UK scholar. He also holds a German Diplom Degree in Biochemistry from the Free University of Berlin and the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics.
Christian Schneider is a Managing Partner of Vesalius Biocapital and has been a venture capital executive for the past 17 years. As a life science expert, he has extensive hands-on work and investment experience in the areas of diagnostics, medtech, and therapeutics. As shareholder and board member he actively supports and advices start-up companies.
Starting as an R&D scientist at Boehringer Mannheim / Roche (Tutzing/Penzberg, Germany, 1992-1995), he developed automated tests for the early detection of cancer. At Centocor (Malvern, Pennsylvania, USA, 1995-2000, sold to Johnson&Johnson for USD 5B in 1999), he led diagnostic product development in transatlantic collaborations. Later, as a business developer and external research manager in Centocor’s / Johnson&Johnson’s biological therapeutics business, he negotiated, financed, and managed international early-stage product development projects.
As a Managing Partner of venture capital firm PolyTechnos (Germany 2001-2008), he was directly responsible for the investments in and IPOs of OncoMethylome Sciences (Euronext, 2006), Devgen (Euronext, 2005) and Jerini (Frankfurt, 2005) and served as an independent director on the boards of Hepa Wash and MagnaMedics. In 2008, he joined the pan-European life science venture capital firm Vesalius Biocapital as a Managing Partner with responsibility for the investments and exits of Skyline (write-off) and Activaero (EUR 130m trade sale to Vectura, 2014). Across three Vesalius fund generations, he serves on the boards of portfolio companies Ventaleon, Omeicos, Humedics and Softhale.
Schneider holds a doctorate degree in veterinary medicine (1992) and a PhD in immunology (1995), both from the University of Munich, Germany, and an MBA in healthcare administration from Penn State University, Pennsylvania (1999).
Tony Sedgwick is an experience Biotech and Pharma "entrepreneurial executive"having worked as an academic and in start ups as well as multinationals he has collected many experiences. He has a deep belief that people not expertise is the key to the fast moving technology space. The human not machine part will be the unique selling point for business in the future. Innovation and creativity is key. His blog site is suitably name www.thoughtdisruptor.com
Dr. Pranjul Shah is a Business Development and Innovation Expert at the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine at the University of Luxembourg. He holds a PhD in Micro and Nanotechnology from the Technical University of Denmark. During his PhD, he was handpicked as a Kauffman Global Fellow to learn the ropes of entrepreneurship at MIT, Stanford and Harvard University. He is recipient of numerous research (Lush Prize 2016), Innovation (Falling Walls Luxembourg 2015) and business plan awards most recently for his invention of an artificial gut on a chip model “HuMiX” which recapitulates host-microbe interactions of the human gastrointestinal tract (Shah, Nature Communications, 2016). He is preparing for commercial launch of the HuMiX model as a drug discovery tool allowing elucidation of the role of human microbiome in pathogenesis of idiopathic medical conditions and thereby opening avenues for novel drug discovery.
Dominik Sievert founded the inveox GmbH with Maria Driesel in February 2017. As CTO and managing director, he is responsible for product development, HR and Legal. Prior to that he gained various experiences in a healthcare consultancy and worked as technology analyst for a patent attorney. His first touch point with laboratory automation was during a study cooperation with Roche Diagnostics. At the same time, he studied molecular biotechnology at TUM.
Technische Universität München
Arne Skerra is Full Professor at the Technical University of Munich. After a PhD in Biochemistry from the Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich he worked as Postdoc at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology and then as a group leader at the Max-Planck-Institute for Biophysics, before he became Associate Professor for Protein Chemistry at the TU Darmstadt. His research area is protein design and he has made several inventions in applied biotechnology, such as the bacterial production of functional antibodies, the Strep-tag protein purification technology, Anticalins as a novel class of binding proteins and PASylation as a generic approach to extend the plasma half-life of biopharmaceuticals. Also, he founded two companies, Pieris Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: PIRS) and XL-protein GmbH.
Tom Strassner is a partner in Dentons’ Munich office. He has extensive experience in corporate law matters, venture capital, private equity and M&A transactions, joint ventures, corporate restructurings as well as litigation. Tom Strassner has advised on numerous international and cross-border transactions and restructurings of companies and corporations. Among his clients are international investors, medium-sized companies as well as start-ups from different sectors, including information technology, health care and life sciences. Before Dentons Tom Strassner was a counsel at another leading law firm and served as legal counsel for a venture capitalist. He attended Copenhagen Business School and the University of Munich. A member of the Munich Bar Association, Tom is admitted to practice law in Germany.
Johnson & Johnson Innovation
Klaus Suwelack is New Venture Lead Germany for Neuroscience and Cardiovascular & Metabolics at Johnson & Johnson Innovation, London. In this role he sources and executes on delivery of transformational, innovative solutions for healthcare in the Neuroscience and CVM space in Germany.
Previously, Klaus Suwelack was General Manager of the Institute for Innovation and Integration in Healthcare, a newly formed Johnson & Johnson company for psychiatric care management in Germany. He was one of the founders of the company and organized the care management process for up to 13.000 patients in the federal state of Lower Saxony in Germany. Klaus Suwelack was Executive Director of Strategic Healthcare Relations at Janssen Germany and responsible for relationship building and contracting with health insurances, doctors associations and other institutions and he was a Business Unit Director for Neuroscience. He also served as Medical Director and Marketing Director for Desitin GmbH in Hamburg. There he built a new franchise for Parkinson´s Disease.
Klaus Suwelack holds a PhD in Pharmacology (University of Bonn) and a Certificate of Business Excellence of Columbia University.
Oliver Thorn-Seshold leads a junior research group at the LMU Munich, developing small molecule inhibitors as reagents and cancer therapeutics. After a PhD in fluorescent probes at the University of Lyon, he began research into scaffold-hopping from known cancer drugs to synthetic light-sensitive analogues. Using these analogues, his group was able to precisely apply chemotherapeutic activity to desired areas of tissues, by only illuminating the desired tissue area. The first generation compounds were published in Cell and Science as well as featuring in The Economist; the team is working now on generation four designs. Teaming up with Yelena Wainman, he runs the EXIST-funded CytoSwitch spin-off project to take these light-localised chemotherapeutics towards clinical development for treatment of poorly treatable cancers.
Merck Venture Fund
Bram Vanparys, PhD, MBA, is a Director at Merck Ventures in Amsterdam. He joined the previous biopharma fund – MS Ventures – in 2015 as Investment Director. Between 2010 and 2015, he was senior investment manager life sciences at PMV (Brussels, Belgium), where he built the biotech franchise. He was instrumental in the start-up, growth and exit of several biotech companies. Before PMV, Bram Vanparys was biotech analyst at KBC Private Equity and consultant at Deloitte. He holds a PhD in biotechnology from the University of Ghent, Belgium and an MBA from Vlerick Business School, Belgium.
University of Regensburg/Lophius Biosciences
Ralf Wagner earned his PhD at the LMU, Munich. He is currently University Professor for Molecular Microbiology (Virology) at the University of Regensburg. During his academic research, he consequently translated insights into HIV replication and pathogenesis into advanced vaccination strategies, which reached phase 1 and 2 clinical testing. Besides his academic activities, he was founder and from 2000 – 2012 also CEO and CSO of GeneArt AG, a previously public and multiply awarded (e.g. European Biotech Award) Regensburg based biotech company. GeneArt is now part of ThermoFisher Inc. with more than 300 employees working at GeneArt. Today, he is board member and advisor of several biotech companies as well as local venture capital funds and supports University spin-offs as business coach.
Yelena Wainman co-runs the CytoSwitch spin-off project at the LMU Munich (Pharmacy Department) with Dr. Oliver Thorn-Seshold. She studied organic chemistry at University College London and the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, before a PhD in medicinal chemistry at the University of Cambridge where she was active in the biotech/start-up scene through the Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable and entrepreneurial projects (Kaleidoscope, Palletech). After her PhD, she did her post-doc at Harvard Medical School/MGH working on photoswitchable HDAC inhibitors, before joining the CytoSwitch project at the LMU in 2016. She started the project off with the Bavarian Flügge startup grant to then obtain EXIST funding which is enabling the preclinical development of CytoSwitch’s light-localised chemotherapeutics as treatments for poorly treatable cancers.
Johannes B. Woehrstein is both an entrepreneur and researcher at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry and the LMU Munich. He is one of the founders of DEOXY Technologies, a biotech spin-off from the LMU Munich, developing a platform for single cell transcriptomics. Before working on DEOXY Technologies, he worked as a researcher at Harvard University, where he started Ultivue, a high-resolution microscopy spin-off.
Anja Zimmermann is working for Ascenion GmbH since 2001. She has a PhD in biology and also holds an MBA. She is responsible for managing the equity of Ascenion’s Spin offs, for scientific and in particular economic evaluations of inventions and for promoting licenses of Intellectual Property Rights to the biotech industry and big pharma. Apart from analyzing the scientific background of inventions, she is also assessing the market potential of Intellectual property. This ranges from general market reviews to detailed analysis, including net present value (NPV) calculations. Also she is a chairperson of the MGC-Foundation.
Anja Zimmermann was/is expert for the European Commission, evaluator and jury member for HTGF, BayStartUP, the Vienna business agency, member of the professional development committee within the European technology transfer association ASTP Proton, member of supervisory and advisory boards of various biotech companies and chairperson of the MGC-Foundation.
Before joining Ascenion, Anja Zimmermann worked at Klinikum Grosshadern, Munich and at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York in cancer research.
She studied biology and did her PhD work at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich, focusing on immunology, microbiology and molecular biology and received her MBA from Cardiff University. Before going to university she was trained at and working for Deutsche Bank AG.
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