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Scientific Advisory Board

Dr Brian Sproat

Brian Sproat obtained a D.Phil. in the field of bioorganic chemistry at the University of Oxford in 1978 and commenced his career in the oligonucleotide field in 1981 at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, UK. Following this he ran a research group at the EMBL, Heidelberg, Germany (1984-1994) where he developed many novel DNA and RNA analogues with broad applications in molecular biology and also managed the oligonucleotide synthesis core facility. Subsequently he became General Manager of Innovir GmbH, Göttingen, Germany (1994-1999), a company developing hammerhead ribozyme-based therapeutics and then became CSO of RNA-Tec, which became Integrated DNA Technologies, BVBA, Leuven, Belgium (October 2000-end 2009).

In 2010 Brian became Managing Director of Chemconsilium GCV, Belgium, consulting primarily for pharma and biotech companies on all aspects of oligonucleotide chemistry including synthesis, purification, analysis, scale-up, bioconjugation, labelling & CMC with particular focus on antisense oligonucleotides, decoys, aptamers and siRNA.

He has published more than 100 scientific articles in peer reviewed journals, has authored/co-authored 14 book chapters and is inventor/co-inventor on several patents.

Dr Thomas Rupp

Thomas Rupp is Consultant and Owner of Thomas Rupp Consulting. His experience with oligonucleotides dates back to 1985 when he started his career as Chemical Technician at the Cancer Research Centre (DKFZ) in Heidelberg and designed and operated one of the first oligonucleotide synthesis and sequencing core facilities in Europe besides learning basic virology in the group of Nobel Laureate Prof. Harald zur Hausen. Between 1990 and 1993 he worked at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory Heidelberg (EMBL) in Brian Sproat's research group, designing a DNA synthesiser and teaching at EMBO workshops on synthesis and sequencing. His background in virology then brought him to Loyola University, Chicago, IL, in 1994 as a member of Prof. Lutz Gissmann's relocated DKFZ research group. As a core team member he set up molecular biology labs focused on virology and cancer research, and initiated a DNA synthesis lab for Human Papilloma Virus typing.

In 1995 he returned to Germany and re-joined Brian Sproat at Innovir GmbH in Göttingen where he set up a ribozyme synthesis and characterization lab. In 1997 he moved to Berlin, Germany and joined Noxxon as one of the initial employees to set up and operate a Spiegelmer synthesis and analytical lab, as well as developing scalable manufacturing processes for complex oligonucleotides and initiating an automation lab for high-throughput Aptamer-selection. In 2002 he joined Amersham Biosciences (now GE Healthcare) as Technical Application Specialist for all oligonucleotide related products within Europe and Asia.

In 2010 he joined Girindus AG to support Business Development in Europe and Asia, training the technical staff in state-of-the-art GMP manufacturing of oligonucleotides. After the acquisition of Girindus AG by Nitto Denko Avecia in 2013, Thomas became an independent consultant in the oligonucleotide therapeutics market, specialising in CMC, process design, process development, and process troubleshooting, as well as facility design for oligonucleotide manufacturing under GMP.