Christian Hackenberger

Next-generation bioconjugates for intra- and extracellular targeting
Humboldt Universität zu Berlin and Leibniz-Forschungsinstitut für Molekulare Pharmakologie (Germany)


Christian P. R. Hackenberger studied chemistry at the Universität Freiburg and the UW Madison/Wisconson and his doctoral studies at the RTWH Aachen. After a postdoctoral stay at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), he founded his own research group at the Freie Universität Berlin in 2005 as an Emmy Noether fellow. In 2012, he became Leibniz-Humboldt Professor for Chemical Biology at the Leibniz-Research Institute for Molecular Pharmacology and the Humboldt Universität zu Berlin. His group develops chemical strategies to functionalize proteins and antibodies using highly selective chemical reactions to generate protein-based therapeutics against cancer, Alzheimer and viral infections. He is a co-founder of the Munich-based company Tubulis, which engineers better tolerable cancer drugs using technologies from his lab. In 2018, Christian was awarded the Leonidas Zervas Award from the Eurpean Peptide Society and in 2020, he was the first recipient of the Falling Walls breakthrough of the year award in the Life Sciences, recognizing his contributions to develop next-generation biopharmaceuticals.


About his talk: Next-generation bioconjugates for intra- and extracellular targeting

In this presentation, Christian Hackenberger will focus on the chemical modification of functional proteins for for pharmaceutical and medicinal applications. In his laboratory, they use a combined approach of recently developed chemoselective reactions and enzymatic ligations, for instance the so-called P5- or Tub-tag®-labeling, for bioconjugation. By generating stable antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs), structurally defined multivalent scaffolds or cell-permeable antibodies via conjugating cyclic cell-penetrating peptides, they provide new modalities for most challenging pharmaceutical targets, including next generation cancer therapeutics or novel inhibitors against viral infections.