We make biomedical research more efficient, more agile, and more fun

Our Team

Our team combines the knowledge and expertise to continuously develop new project ideas together with partners and to support our research teams during running projects. We are here to find the answers to your questions. Just get in touch!

Management & Support Team

Dr. Christian Tidona

Managing Director

  • Short Bio

    Christian Tidona is a biotech entrepreneur, business angel, and managing director at the BioMed X Institute in Heidelberg, Germany. He studied molecular biology and received his doctoral degree from the University of Heidelberg. Throughout his entire professional life his focus has always been to foster innovation at the interface between academia and industry. Christian is co-founder of the Health Axis Europe alliance between the European health innovation clusters in Leuven, Maastricht, Copenhagen, and Heidelberg. He is chairman of the Weizmann Young European Network (WYEN) and member of the International Board of the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. Christian is married and father of two children.

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Dr. Thomas Rückle

Senior Vice President Research

  • Short Bio

    Dr. Thomas Rückle studied Chemistry and Toxicology at the University of Ulm, Germany, where he received his PhD in Organic Chemistry in 1996. After two postdoctoral fellowships at the Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland and at the Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies, San Diego (CA), USA, he joined Serono International in Geneva (Switzerland). From 1998 to 2006 he led Research and Preclinical Programs in Autoimmune Diseases and Oncology. From 2007 onwards, Thomas held several global roles in Project Management and Translational Medicine of Neurodegenerative Diseases and Oncology. From 2012 to 2016 he was Director in Translational Medicine at Medicines for Malaria Venture, the world’s leading NGO in antimalarial R&D. Prior to BioMed X Institute, he spent 3 years as Chief Development Officer at GeNeuro, a clinical stage biotechnology company working in the field of autoimmune and neurodegenerative diseases. Together with his teams, Thomas has brought over a dozen molecules from Research into clinical trials. He is principal or co-author of over 50 peer-reviewed scientific publications and co-inventor on 23 patents.

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Yvonne Stappenbeck

Vice President HR & Operations

  • Short Bio

    Yvonne has been at BioMed X since its foundation in 2013.

    Being responsible for “almost everything except research” takes a strong passion for strategy and organization but above all for people and their needs. She sees her position as a great opportunity to help create a work environment that allows groundbreaking research and that her colleagues look forward to coming to every day.

    Prior to her position as VP HR & Operations she was BioMed X’ Head of Operations until 2019 and Head of HR until Summer 2021.

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Benjamin Raeder

Head of Operations

  • Short Bio

    Benjamin is a biologist by training. At BioMed X, he is in charge of the entire lab infrastructure. He uses his coordinating skills and his eye for detail to create a work environment for our research teams that makes it easy for them to focus on science. Before joining BioMed X in December 2019, Benjamin was Laboratory Officer in Charge at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), Heidelberg, and prior to this worked as an application development scientist in a Heidelberg biotech startup.

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Susanne Burkhardt

Legal Management & Head of Christian Tidona’s Office

  • Short Bio

    Susanne has been working as Christian Tidona’s Personal Assistant since 2009; first at BioRN Cluster Management and since 2016 at BioMed X. She enjoys working in an international atmosphere and ensuring the smooth running of his office. In addition she deals with legal issues at BioMed X.

    Previously, she managed the family offices of several leadership personalities in industry and politics in Berlin.

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Dr. Salvatore Benfatto

Staff Scientist

  • Short Bio
    • 2018 – 2021 Postdoctoral Researcher with Team DDC, BioMed X Institute, Heidelberg, Germany
    • 2016-2018: Postdoc with Prof. Massimo Delledonne, Functional Genomics Lab, University of Verona, Italy
    • 2014: Visiting scientist at the Biocomputing Lab of Prof. Anna Tramontano, University “Sapienza” of Rome, Italy
    • 2013–2016: PhD with Prof. Giuseppe Teti, University of Messina, Italy
    • 2009-2012: Master of Science in Biology, University of Messina, Italy
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Silke Lämmler

Executive Assistant

  • Short Bio

    Silke joined BioMed X in July 2020 and supports our research teams in many ways with her huge organizational competence. She has a background in business administration and long-term experience in international work contexts. This, along with her interest for foreign cultures and her passion for languages, help her to master the special everyday challenges of BioMed X’ multicultural environment.

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Cornelia Ochman

Lab Manager

  • Short Bio

    Cornelia is a biological technical assistant by training. In the BioMed X Support Team she takes care of purchasing and general lab management. She joined BioMed X in 2014 as a research associate in the research team Metabolism and Signaling in Cancer (MSC) where she supported all team members in their experimental work. Prior to her engagement at BioMed X, Conny worked as a biological technical assistant at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) in Heidelberg.

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Klaudia Rojczyk


  • Short Bio

    Klaudia Rojczyk joined BioMed X in October 2021. She holds an Office Communication Management Diploma and gained extensive work experience as a Team Assistant.

    The past years she lived in New Zealand where she worked mostly as a Bank clerk and Sales Assistant.

    With her variety of work experience and language skills she will complement the BioMed X Support Team as the Assistant to the Head of Research.

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Supervisory Board

Dr. Gerhard Ries


  • Short Bio

    Gerhard Ries studied law and received his PhD from the University of Heidelberg, Germany. He has been a lawyer since 1998. Gerhard Ries specializes in corporate, association and foundation law. His main areas of practice are the formation, restructuring and transformation of companies as well as M&A business. For many years he has been advising private and public companies in the healthcare sector. Gerhard Ries is member of the supervisory boards of several companies, has himself managed companies as CEO and is also active on the boards of several foundations.

Fabian Engelhorn

  • Short Bio

    Fabian Engelhorn completed an apprenticeship in trade and commerce (Handelsfachwirt) in Munich, studied retail management at the University of Applied Sciences in Worms and then spent 18 months in the USA and Hong Kong undertaking overseas internships. He subsequently worked for two years as a member of the management team at Sportler AG, Bolzano, Italy. In 2003 he took over management of the family company Engelhorn GmbH & Co. KGaA, Mannheim and since 2015 has been CEO of the family owned company. He is active on the board of the Rhine-Neckar Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IHK) in his role as vice president, in the supervisory board of the Intersport eG, Heilbronn and the Rhein-Neckar-Löwen handball club, both in Mannheim.

Dr. Bernhard Kirschbaum

  • Short Bio

    Bernhard Kirschbaum, PhD, studied and spent his early career as a researcher in biochemistry and physiological chemistry at the University of Konstanz, Germany, receiving his PhD in 1989. He moved on to work at the Rockefeller University in New York and the Pasteur Institute in Paris. Subsequently, he joined the pharmaceutical industry where he covered a broad range of technological and disease areas. Before his retirement as an executive, he was head of Global Research and Early Development at Merck Serono. In this role he was a member of the Pharmaceutical Executive Committee. Prior to joining Merck KGaA in 2005 he was Vice President Discovery Research and Global Head of Therapeutic Domains Thrombosis & Angiogenesis for Sanofi-Aventis. He also worked for Aventis, Hoechst Marion Roussel in various senior positions and headed the Centre of Applied Genomics in Martinsried, Germany.

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