DIRK REYN

CHAIRMAN, FLANDERS BIO

" UNLOCKING OF A NEW WAVE OF BIOTECH INNOVATIONS IN FLANDERS."

- DIRK REYN, CHAIRMAN, FLANDERS BIO

As the chairman of flanders.bio, an ex-CEO of four (4) start-up companies and an investor in the biotech scene in Europe, my heart and soul lie with Biotech. I have seen the Biotech landscape in Flanders grow to the absolute top in Europe. It is not without reason that the 2021 McKinsey study proclaimed Flanders as a leading region in a number of new life science patents and influential publications per capita, the ranking of its universities, the fast speed to approval for new clinical trials, rate of government non-dilutive grants and ability for start-ups to attract funding from local investors and/ or the local stock market.

Every day I am amazed by the unlimited possibilities that disruptive emerging technologies offer. Thanks to the recent advances in genomic research and new mRNA and viral vector technologies, we were able to unlock the secrets of the Covid-19 virus and vaccines were available within 12-15 months. But it doesn’t stop there. Other new technologies like therapies that weaponize the patient’s own immune cells; molecules
that deliver missing genes to treat rare but fatal genetic disorders, therapies that regulate our gut flora to stabilize diseases, are witnesses of the unprecedented scientific progress we have made over the last years. Also, ever-increasing computational power is revealing unexpected correlations or predictive markers in huge healthcare datasets, resulting in new targets for cancer or other life-threatening diseases, better selection of lead compounds and identification of the right patients to treat.

I strongly believe that the future lies in cross-sector collaboration. With flanders.bio, we were at the cradle of the flanders.healthTech initiative, where biotech, medtech and IT ideas can grow into new collaborations or companies. We are only on the eve of a new industrial revolution and innovation boom in the biotech sector. The future is bright – the future is biotech.

Dirk Reyn is a Pharmacist/ MBA with Sales and Marketing, Crisis Management, Business Development and CEO skills acquired in the international pharmaceutical industry over a period of 35 years. He is the co-founder of four biotech/healthtech companies including Movetis (2006), EtheRNA (2016) and Spectricity (2018). He is one of the three Managing Partners of the Bioqube Factory Fund, a new biotech investment Fund that closed at 110 Mio euro. He is also President of flanders.bio the organization of small biotech companies in Flanders.

FLANDERS BIO

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