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Christoph Huber

Co-Founder & Non-Executive Member Of The Board, Biontech

Christoph Huber is a renowned professor emeritus of medicine and co-founder of BioNTech, CIMT, CI3, TRON and various other institutions and platforms. He is an international leader and famous contributor in basic and translational tumor immunology.

Prof. Huber studied medicine at the Leopold Franzens University in Innsbruck, where he received his habilitation in internal medicine in 1976. Research and educational stays in immunology and stem cell transplantation led him to the Karolinska Institute of Tumor Biology in Stockholm, the Department of Immunology of the Wallenberg Institute in Uppsala and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle under the later Nobel Laureate Prof. Don Thomas. In 1984, he was appointed professor of clinical immunology and stem cell transplantation and head of the department of the same name at the Leopold-Franzens-University in Innsbruck. From 1990 to 2009, Huber was head of the 3rd Medical Clinic with a focus on hematology, oncology and stem cell transplantation at the University Medical Center of the Johannes-Gutenberg-University Mainz.

As a clinician, Huber first established an innovative stem cell transplantation and immunotherapy program in Innsbruck and then developed Mainz University Medicine into an internationally leading center for immuno-oncology and stem cell transplantation. He also founded a successful medical school with numerous ordinariates in Germany, Austria, the Netherlands and Sweden.

As a researcher, Huber focused on the investigation of mechanisms of tumor defense or stem cell transplantation and their therapeutic influence. He has published more than 500 original papers, most of them in leading medical journals, and is an international leader in the development of these promising areas.

As a research manager, Huber was on the one hand the founder of academic research structures such as the Collaborative Research Center 432 "Tumor Defense" and the clinical research group 410 "Lymphocyte Defense" of the German Research Foundation, the now leading research network in Europe "Cancer Immunotherapy" (CIMT), the translational Oncology Institute TRON and the advanced technology cluster "Individualized Immune Intervention- CI3" of the German Federal Government. On the other hand, he was editor of international journals, of teaching and handbooks, as reviewer or functionaries of national and international research funding organizations and scientific advisor of large research institutions.

In the last 20 years, Huber has also been involved as an entrepreneur in research transfer and the founding and consulting of biotech companies. In 2001 he founded Ganymed Pharmaceuticals AG with his partners Prof. Ugur Sahin and PD Dr Özlem Türeci, in 2008 BioNTech AG and in 2008 the translational research institute of TRON. Ganymed has developed clinically successfully validated monoclonal antibodies against tumor antigens discovered by them, thereby doubling the life expectancy of tumors of the upper gastrointestinal tract and was purchased by the big pharma group Astellas for $1.4 billion in 2016. BioNTech is now a NASDAQ-listed biotech company with >2000 employees and a market cap of $25 billion. BioNtech is one of the global leaders in the development of highly innovative mRNA-based immunotherapeutics against cancer and infectious diseases. BioNTech was the first European company to develop mRNA-based COVID19 vaccines and expects conditional approval by the end of 2020. These and other highly innovative drugs are currently being developed further in large scale collaborative deals with leading pharmaceutical companies (Genenthech, Roche, Sanofi, Eli Lilly, Pfizer, Bayer, Genmab, Fosum, etc.).In addition to his entrepreneurial activities, Huber is a member of several Scientific Advisory Boards of pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology firms and strategic investors in Germany, UK, France, Austria, Norway and the USA.