Dr. Gaston Matthyssens has a Ph.D. and M.Sc. from the Free University of Brussels. He received training in the laboratories of three Nobel Prize winners, Dr. Susumu Tonegawa at the Basel Institute of Immunology and Dr. Cesar Milstein and Fred Sanger at the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, England.
Following an academic career as Professor at the Free University of Brussels, Gaston joined the biotech company Plant Genetic Systems NV in 1986 as a member of the management team and laboratory director. Plant Genetics Systems was acquired by Hoechst Agrevo for USD 750m.
When his protein-engineering group was acquired in 1991 by Corvas International, San Diego, he became its European Vice President responsible for drug discovery and international operations.
In 1997 Gaston became VP Business Development for the Flanders Institute for Biotechnology (VIB), Gent, Belgium, where he identified mature intellectual property and conceptualized new businesses around it. He was responsible for setting up the businesses, recruiting management and forming venture capital syndicates for VIB’s first three spin-offs: deVGen (successfully floated on Euronext in 2005), CropDesign (sold to BASF) and Ablynx (successfully floated on Euronext in 2007). In total Gaston was responsible for raising EUR 18m in seed money for these companies.
Before joining Vesalius Biocapital, he was a partner at Value4Growth, a consulting firm specializing in start-up companies, and worked with Mr Verdood and Mr Geldhof since 2001.