Herbert Heyneker, Advisory Board Member to the Thuja investment team, has been honored by the Dutch Monarchy for his contributions and commitment to biotechnology in the Netherlands and Leiden. Heyneker has been awarded the rank of Officer in the Order of Orange-Nassau and received this prestigious Royal award yesterday from the Mayor of Leiden, Henri Lenferink, during a symposium held in honor of the 35th anniversary of the Leiden Bioscience Park.
After earning his Ph.D. from Leiden University in The Netherlands, Heyneker moved in 1975 to San Francisco to accept a postdoc position in Prof. Herbert Boyer’s UCSF laboratory. Here he was involved in pioneering research into gene splicing and somatostatin. Soon afterward, he joined Genentech, founded by Boyer and Swanson, as one of their first employees. In 1984, he moved to the Genentech spinoff Genencor to become Vice-President of Research. In the 90s he co-founded several biotechnology companies including Eos, a functional genomics company, where he was the Chief Technology Officer. He also served on the board of directors for GenPharm and Guava Technologies in the U.S. and the Netherlands for IntroGene (acquired by Crucell), Pharming, Pepscan, ProFibrix, and Prosensa. He is an author on more than 50 scientific papers and inventor on more than 30 patents. Besides his advisory role at Thuja, Herb currently advises to Qiagen and various biotech start-ups, and is Chariman of the Board at Leiden based Mimetas.