Scientific Advisory Board

Five international experts from the fields of immunology and drug development advise TRON on pursuing new diagnostics and drugs for the treatment of cancer and other diseases of the immune system.

TRON 2014-2017 Scientific Advisory Board:

Cornelis Melief (Chairman of the SAB) is Professor Emeritus of Immunohematology at the Leiden University Medical Centre in The Netherlands. Trained as a M.D., he completed his Ph.D. on leukocyte antibodies and immune adherence. His early research focused on T-cell recognition of transplantation antigens. In the past 20 years he has focused mainly on the development of T-cell based immunotherapy against cancer. He is also co-founder and CSO of the biopharmaceutical company ISA Pharmaceuticals. Prof. Melief has published more than 350 articles, several of which were in “Cell” or “Nature” and he is the recipient of the Akzo Nobel Science Award.

Hartmut Ehrlich is Chief Executive Officer of ABIVAX in Paris, France. He has more than 25 years of industry experience in research, development and medical marketing. He has led various clinical development teams and has managed portfolio and product development strategies, previously as Vice President of Global R&D and Medical Affairs at Baxter BioScience in Vienna, Austria. Hartmut Ehrlich is trained as a physician and medical researcher. In 2011, Hartmut Ehrlich was named “Professor” by the Austrian President and the Austrian Minister for Science and Research, and he received the title of “Honorary Professor” of the Danube University Krems, Lower Austria in 2013.

Annegret Kuhn is head of the Management Board Corporate Development and Strategic Coordination at the University Clinic Münster. She was head of the Interdisciplinary Center for Clinical Trials (IZKS) at the University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz/Germany, Senior Group Leader “Autoimmune Diseases of the Skin” at the Division of Immunogenetics of the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg/Germany and chair of the European Society of Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus (EUSCLE) e.V.. Trained as an M.D. in 1998, she habilitated about lupus erythematosus in 2003 and received a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Health Care Management in 2013. Prof. Kuhn has a strong clinical and research experience in i) the classification, diagnostics   and treatment of Lupus Erythematosus, ii) apoptosis and peripheral tolerance in inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, as well as iii) the translation of new therapeutic strategies into the clinic. She received several awards, including a Heisenberg-Scholarship of the German Research Foundation (DFG) and published over 150 papers and over 25 book chapters.

Laurence Zitvogel is Research Director at the French Institut National de la Santé et Recherche Médicale (French Institute of Health and Medical Research). Prof. Zitvogel is a trained physician and holds a degree in Medical Oncology from the School of Medicine of the University of Paris, France. She pioneered the concept of immunogenic cell death and showed that chemotherapy, radiotherapy and inhibitors of tyrosine kinase mediate their tumoricidal activity, at least partly through the immune system. Prof. Zitvogel has published more than 300 articles, several of which were in high impact journals like “Cell”, “Nature” and “Science”. She received the prestigious SWISS BRIDGE Award for Cancer Research in 2014.

Andreas Diefenbach is Professor at the University of Mainz Medical Centre and Head of the Institute of Medical Microbiology and Hygiene. Prof. Diefenbach studied medicine at Friedrich-Alexander-University (FAU) in Nürnberg Erlangen and the Imperial College in London. The Diefenbach laboratory in Mainz studies development and function of the innate immune system. Its current research is focused on a molecular understanding of how the innate immune system promotes tissue homeostasis by contributing to the adaptation of multicellular organisms to pernicious environments, such as those at barrier surfaces (e.g., intestine, skin). In 2012 he won the prestigious research award of the European Research Council (ERC).

Christoph Huber (co-founder of TRON and permanent meber of the Scientific Advisory Board) is Professor Emeritus of Hematology/Oncology at the Johannes-Gutenberg University Medical Center in Mainz Germany. He is an esteemed immuno-oncology leader with multiple preclinical and clinical contributions in the field, is president of the leading European cancer immunotherapy network CIMT, co-founder of TRON, of Ganymed Pharmaceuticals and BioNTech and board member of the cutting edge technology cluster Individualized Immune Intervention Ci3 of the German Federal Government. He is editor of textbooks of his field and has published more than 450 articles many of which in leading top journals. He is recipient of multiple distinctions such as the German Federal Cross of Merits, research awards and of an honorary doctorate.