Non-profit, patient-focused organizations are becoming an increasingly visible force in early-stage biomedical research and biotech funding and support. One of these organizations, the French Muscular Dystrophy Association (AFM)-Telethon, is among the major actors of biomedical research for rare diseases in the world. AFM-Telethon is composed of patients and their families who are affected by a genetic, rare, progressive and severely disabling illness: neuromuscular diseases.
This event will have Serge Braun, the Scientific Director of AFM-Telethon, presenting the foundation, which has recently launched the 1st seed-stage fund dedicated to rare diseases, and also speaking about how they can support and work together with biotech companies. Moreover, Thomas Meier, CEO of Santhera, which has in the past received funding from AFM-Telethon, will share his first-hand insights and his experience on collaborating with patient organizations.
CV Dr. Serge Braun
Serge Braun, is currently Scientific Director of AFM-Telethon, the French Muscular Dystrophy Association, and President of the CRO Genosafe, a company specialising in the quality control of gene therapy products. He has 10 years’ university experience and has spent 10 years in the biotechnology sector. He obtained his degree in Pharmacy and a PhD in Pharmacology from Louis Pasteur University, Strasbourg.
He currently serves as scientific expert or Scientific board member for a number of state bodies and non-profit associations, venture capitalists, biotechs and bioclusters, as well as being reviewer for major scientific journals.
CV Dr. Thomas Meier
Thomas Meier was appointed CEO of Santhera, effective October 1, 2011, after having served seven years as CSO for the Company. Mr. Meier was the founder and CEO of MyoContract, a Basel-based research company focused on orphan neuromuscular diseases, which he merged in 2004 with Graffinity of Heidelberg, Germany, to form today’s Santhera. Before that he was an independent research group leader and lecturer in the Department of Pharmacology and Neurobiology at the University of Basel. He holds a PhD in biology from the University of Basel.