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Business Team

The management team consists of internationally experienced scientists, sales professionals, project managers and business development managers.

Dr. Christian Zilch and Dr. Wilhelm Gerdes bring experience with project management of complex projects in the area of diagnostics and are well-acquainted with competing technology platforms. While Dr. Zilch is responsible for overall management, Dr. Gerdes manages through the parent company Bioville GmbH the financing aspects of the firm. 

Mr. Bernhard Faber LL.M. is responsible for the administrative tasks of Magna Diagnostics GmbH. He is additionally responsible for legal and tax matters in his position with the parent company Bioville GmbH. He has had responsibility as an attorney and a management consultant for many small and medium sized firms in different phases of the firm life-cycle from initial establishment to IPO.

CEO/CSO – Christian Zilch, Ph.D.

Dr. Zilch as managing director has acquired a broad overview of various technology-oriented companies in the biotechnology sector during his activities as Business Development manager with the Fraunhofer IZI and Siemens Medical Solutions. His tenure as Senior Consultant and Senior Financial Analyst with CE Capital, ICE Securities as well as ICE Partners, where he was actively involved respectively as an investment banker and VC representative, has given him experience in start-up financing and strategic advising for active portfolios, in particular in the biotechnology,  pharma and medical devices sectors. Additionally he brings in practical know-how in creation and financing of spin-offs as an initiator of the IT-firm Generation Internex Ltd. in the year 1999 and the consulting firm Innovalis in 2002. In the context of his activity with Siemens Medical Solutions Dr. Zilch was responsible for the evaluation of new diagnostic platform technologies and the co-ordination of three diagnostics projects. As Business Development Manager at the Fraunhofer IZI he  successfully acquired industry projects and assisted in generation of new start-ups in Leipzig, including Bioville, Nuvo Research, SpinPlant and InnovaStem. Dr. Zilch is involved in more than a 20 patent applications in the IVD field. He completed his training in biochemistry and molecular biology at the Free University of Berlin and the University College London Medical School as well as guest scientist at the University of Oxford. Parallel to his biochemistry study and his DAAD-funded postgraduate work at the Tumor Immunology Unit of the Imperial Cancer Research Fund he studied Political Economics at the Free University of Berlin and Management Economics at the correspondence University of Hagen.

Scientific assistant - Nicole S. Schröter

Nicole S. Schröter leads the experiments of magnetic bead control of MinoLab and immobilization experiments of e-Brains. For three months in mid-2008, Mrs. Schröter was interning at the Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology (Fraunhofer IZI). She carried out experiments there as a part of a project to characterize the control and behavior of magnetic nanoparticles. Afterwards, Mrs. Schröter interned at the Fraunhofer IZI from 2009 to 2011 in the Department of Diagnostics in the field of molecular biology and biochemistry as a part of the nanotechnology team. For her internal project, she established a nucleic-acid based analytic assay for mycoplasmas in cell culture supernatant in Fraunhofer IZI. Her skills include general laboratory practice, methods of micro and molecular biology, cultivation and cloning strategies, methods for isolation, amplification and detection of nucleic acids, purification of bacterial DNA, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and gel electrophoresis. Since 2011, Mrs. Schröter has been a scientific assistant with Magna Diagnostics and currently leads the experiments of the projects of MinoLab and e-Brains.

Administrative and Legal Affairs – Bernhard Faber LL.M.

Bernhard Faber studied law in Hanover and Konstanz after training with the Deutsche Bank. After the Referendariat in Konstanz and New York and the conclusion of the German lawyer training with the Assessor Exam, Mr. Faber added a second advanced degree in law, which he attained at Fordham University in New York. Following graduation, Mr. Faber remained in New York and took a position at a German firm in the USA. In 2003 Mr. Faber returned to Germany and has since then functioned as attorney at the interfaces active between law and management. Mr. Faber has been active as a consultant and an entrepreneur and has extensive experience in all phases of the business development, including the establishment phase, growth phases, acquisitions, and exits. Mr. Faber is responsible for administrative matters through the parent company Bioville GmbH and legal consulting through Faberlaw for Magna Diagnostics GmbH.

Finance - Dr. rer. nat. Wilhelm Gerdes

Dr. Wilhelm Gerdes is a competent financial manager, who brings along the necessary experience through his years of finance and management activities for diverse biotechnology and consulting firms. Additionally, Dr. Gerdes has extensive experience in regulatory aspects of clinical trials and possesses comprehensive CRO-management know-how gained from years of experience in clinical product and project management. In addition to his management position as Head of Business Development at the Fraunhofer IZI, he was Managing Director of an SMO (Site management organization) in Leipzig, which has carried out in more as 50 different successful clinical trials with international pharmaceutical and diagnostics firms as sponsors. After his completion of a degree (PhD) in Molecular Neurobiology in Göttingen and his graduation from the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine, Dr. Gerdes attained on-the-job training with several medium-size enterprises as a Group Leader, Sales Manager and finally as Financial and Managing Director. Among others, he has worked at Ribonetics GmbH, IBA GmbH, Mobile4U (Nokia Germany GmbH) and Biomit AG (Basel). He provides his financial and management know-how through the parent company of Magna Diagnostics Bioville GmbH.

Alumni / Shareholder - Sonya Faber Ph.D. MBA

Dr. Sonya Faber acquired her Doctor title in Molecular Genetics (Ph.D.) and a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) at New York (New York University and Zicklin School of Business, Baruch College). During her employment with KKSL (Coordination Center for Clinical Trials in Leipzig) she gained extensive experience in the generation of dossiers for INDs, including writing of trial protocols and investigator brochures for clinical studies. She also has extensive experience in grant applications for public funding. From October 2005 until September 2010 she has been responsible for the acquisition and coordination of publically funded grant and industry projects at the Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology in Leipzig. Dr. Faber supported the administration in in-house marketing, as well as in internal and external training courses. She was active in assisting in lead generation for the Group Leaders and assists in the generation of marketing material for in-house products and services for industry. Dr. Faber is one of the founding partners of Magna Diagnostics GmbH and provides consulting support in the area of clinical trials and diagnostic product registration.

BMBF-Project MinoLab

Magna Diagnostics will provide a novel PoC magnetic-bead-based lab-on-a-chip diagnostic platform called "MAZER system" that is rapid, portable, easy to perform and reliable. The system will consist of a single-test “disposable” and an “analyser”. The analyser consists of the mechanic and electronic components that control the processes on the disposable, which is a microfluidic cartridge, acquires and manages the data, and displays the final results.

[more] MAZER system

EU-Project e-BRAINS: Best-Reliable Ambient Intelligent Nano Sensor Systems

Best-Reliable Ambient Intelligent Nano-sensor Systems e-BRAINS represent a giant leap for outstanding future applications in the area of ambient living with the ultimate need for integration of heterogeneous technologies, high-performance nano-sensor devices, miniaturization, smart wireless communication and best-reliability. e-BRAINS with minimum volume and weight as well as reduced power consumption can be utilized in ambient living systems. Successful market entry of such innovative ambient intelligence products will be determined by the performance improvement achieved and the cost advantage in relation to the total system cost. The basic requirement for robustness and reliability of the heterogeneous integration technologies and the nano-sensor layers is in the focus of all e-BRAINS developments.

[more]