“It is in the Negev that Jewish scientific talent and research ability shall be tested.”

David Ben-Gurion
Israel’s First Prime Minister

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The National Institute for Biotechnology
in the Negev Ltd.
Ben-Gurion University of the Negev


NIBN Management

Osnat Ohne, Ph.D.

Chief Executive Officer
osnatohn@bgu.ac.il

Dr. Osnat Ohne joined the NIBN as CEO in December 2017, following years of experience in the innovative drug development industry where she held various managerial positions. Most recently, she served as COO at Tiltan Pharma Ltd., and prior to that, she was a Director Project Leader in Global Innovative R&D at Teva Pharmaceutical Industries for 10 years. During her years at Teva, Dr. Ohne led diverse innovative drug development projects, encompassing discovery, preclinical, and clinical development, for different types of drug product and disease indications, including experience in FDA regulations for the NCE and NTE route of developments. At Teva, she was also involved with due diligence and management of diverse academic projects, as well as bio startup companies, both in Israel and abroad, as part of Teva’s New Projects and Innovative Venture Unit. Over the years, Dr. Ohne served, in parallel, as an independent consultant to Israeli venture capitals, university technology transfer units, startup companies, and bio-accelerators, mainly for early stage innovative drug development projects. Dr. Ohne received her Ph.D. in immunology from Tel Aviv University's Sackler Faculty of Medicine’s Department of Microbiology in 2001.

Sharon Fireman, Ph.D.

Executive Director - Business Development
sfireman@bgu.ac.il

Dr. Sharon Fireman joined the NIBN as Executive Director of Business Development in December 2018. Dr. Fireman has 12 years of pharmaceutical industry experience in both startups and corporations. Prior to joining the NIBN, she served as Director of Project Management at Teva Pharmaceutical Industries where she managed drug development processes for the US and EU markets. Dr. Fireman also led a successful internal open innovation program to accelerate scientific knowledge sharing between Teva’s researchers worldwide. Following that, she joined RISE, Teva’s Venture Innovation Unit, as Corporate Development Director, and led Teva’s first global challenge competition aimed at finding novel solutions for patients’ unmet needs. Before working at Teva, she held R&D and business development positions at Sol-Gel Technologies, a specialty pharmaceutical company that develops innovative dermatological drug products. Dr. Fireman holds a Ph.D. in chemistry from Hebrew University of Jerusalem, specializing in sol-gel chemistry, and an MBA, specializing in strategy and entrepreneurship, from Tel Aviv University.

Ron Lahav, Ph.D.

Executive Director - Research and Development
btecnibn@bgu.ac.il

Dr. Ron Lahav became the NIBN’s Executive Director of R&D in September 2017. Dr. Lahav received his Ph.D. in biology from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, and this was followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at Princeton University in the Department of Molecular Biology. He has been in the pharmaceutical industry for nearly 15 years, holding various leadership and executive management positions. After serving as a Senior Scientist at the Canadian company, AnorMed, until its acquisition by Genzyme, Dr. Lahav returned to Israel and joined Quark Pharmaceuticals as Project Director; he was quickly promoted to overseeing all projects in various fields such as CNS and oncology. Dr. Lahav was also the CEO of an incubator stage company called Quiet Therapeutics where he led the company from seed funding to a series C round. Following his position at Quiet, Ron held CEO positions at two early stage companies, SpliSense and ART Therapeutics.

Prof. Michael M. Meijler, Ph.D.

Scientific Executive Director
meijler@bgu.ac.il

Prof. Michael Meijler obtained his M.Sc. degree in Chemistry from the University of Amsterdam and his Ph.D. degree from the Weizmann Institute of Science, under the supervision of Prof. Abraham Shanzer. He then performed postdoctoral research at Prof. Kim Janda lab at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California. After spending a year as an assistant professor at the Janda group in 2005, Prof. Meijler joined Ben-Gurion University of the Negev’s Department of Chemistry where he became a full professor in 2015. He has been a member of the NIBN since 2009, and he has served as the chair of the Department of Chemistry since August 2018. His research focuses on understanding chemical communication between bacteria themselves, and between bacteria and other species such as plants, fungi, and animals, in various settings. He is particularly interested in unraveling the role of chemical communication among human pathogens helps them in establishing persistent infections, and this knowledge may aid in the development of new therapeutic avenues to combat antibiotic resistance.

Maya Pitshadze, MBA

Executive Director - Finance
pmaya@bgu.ac.il

Maya Pitshadze holds an Executive MBA from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and a BA in economics and computer science from Bar Ilan University. Ms. Pitshadze has over 18 years of experience in senior positions in the field of finance, including a position at an international pharmaceutical company. She has been at the NIBN since its founding and established the company’s financial and administrative systems.

Noam Diamant, Ph.D.

Executive Director - Intellectual Property
patentnibn@bgu.ac.il

Dr. Noam Diamant manages NIBN’s patents portfolio since 2014. He is a biomed professional with a strong academic background, industry R&D experience and a profound understanding of intellectual property strategy and management. He received his Ph.D. in the field of DNA damage repair from the Weizmann Institute of Science in 2008. After concluding his work at the Weizmann Institute, he served as a R&D project manager at Eventus Dx, a cancer diagnostics company. In 2013 Dr. Diamant made a shift to the intellectual property arena, he studied IP strategy and management at the University of Haifa law school and at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) academy. Following this transition, he co-founded Ingenium IP, a specialized consultancy firm in the field of intellectual property strategy for the biomed sector. Dr. Diamant currently manages the IP portfolios of several small and medium sized biomed companies in Israel, where he provides CEO’s with an in-house IP management service tailored to their needs.