BioNTech

Uğur Şahin

2021 Circle Speaker 2021

Professor Uğur Şahin, MD, Co-Founder and CEO of BioNTech, is a physician, immunologist and leader in the development of novel approaches to fight cancer and infectious diseases. He initiated the historic development of the first mRNA vaccine for COVID-19, moving from lab and clinical testing to conditional approval within an unprecedented 11-month period. Uğur Şahin has pioneered several breakthroughs enabling the development of mRNA vaccines and other types of immunotherapies. He also leads BioNTech’s research and development of neoantigen specific mRNA cancer vaccines, which are individually tailored and produced on demand. Şahin and his team developed RNA vaccine nanoparticle delivery strategies that target tissue-derived dendritic cells body-wide. They became the first to administer an mRNA encapsulated in a nanoparticle delivery system to humans. Şahin is coinventor of more than 500 filed patents applications and patents. His academic credentials include serving as a full professor (W3) in Translational Oncology and Immunology at Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany, where he was the supervisor for more than 50 PhD students. He also holds the role of Chairman of the Scientific Management Board of the Helmholtz Institute for Translational Oncology (HI-TRON) in Mainz.