The human protein atlas blog

They are best at translating research to market

Affinity proteomics Antibody

Emanuelle Charpentier
Jens Nielsen
Mathias Uhlen

This month, the online magazine writes about scientists who translates science from academia to the market. While there are a many academic entrepreneurial superstars in the US, points out that there are also some academic researchers in Europe that have been successful in taking their findings into the biotech industry and lists ten individuals in Europe who have been successful at co-founding biotech companies.

Out of these ten persons, no less than three have connections to Sweden. Emanuelle Charpentier, co-discoverer of CRISPR, did some of her findings at Umeň University. She has co-founded CRISPR Therapeutics, and ERS Genomics, which licenses her intellectual property based on the CRISPR systems.

The second "Swede" on the list is Jens Nielsen, professor in Systems Biology at the Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden. His research is focused on systems biology, modeling of metabolism, and metabolic engineering of cell factories and has resulted in more than 550 publications and over 50 patent applications. He has founded several SynBio companies, including Fluxome Sciences (now a part of Swiss Evolva), MycoTeQ (Denmark), MetaboGen (Sweden) and Biopetrolia (Sweden). Additionally, he is a scientific advisor to Genomatica (US) and Evolva.

Professor Nielsen is group leader for the Systems Biology of the Druggable Proteome program in the Wallenberg Center for Protein Research, a center to further develop the resource of knowledge and reagents from the Human Protein Atlas to study the human proteome, in particular of relevance for human health, and to develop platforms for efficient production of biopharmaceuticals.

Last, but not least, lists Mathias Uhlen, director of the Human Protein Atlas, as one of top European Scientists. Mathias Uhlen┤s research is focused on protein science, antibody engineering and precision medicine and range from basic research in human and microbial biology to more applied research, including clinical applications in cancer, infectious diseases, cardiovascular diseases, autoimmune diseases and neurobiology. His group was the first to describe a number of innovations in science including:

  • • Engineered protein A and protein G for purification of antibodies
  • • Affinity tags for purification of recombinant fusion proteins
  • • Solid phase methods for DNA handling using the biotin-streptavidin system
  • • Pyrosequencing leading to the first next generation DNA sequencing instrument (454/Roche)
  • • Affibodies
  • • Protein binders aimed for therapeutic applications

In addition to his academic merits, Mathias Uhlen is a co-founder of Biotage, Affibody and Atlas Antibodies, and has been on the board of many Biotech companies in the region, including Novozymes, Biovitrum, Alligator Bioscience and SweTree Technologies.

"I am of course extremely honored to be on this list together with these fantastic scientists and entrepreneurs, such as Sir Greg Winter, Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jens Nielsen", Mathias Uhlen says.

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