Alexander von Gabain obtained his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology at the University of Heidelberg, held a post-doctorate position at the Stanford University Medical Centre, was Professor at the University of Umeå and at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm in the 1980s and 1990s, as well advisor to pharmaceutical and biotech industries.
2018 he retired from his Chair of Microbiology at the University of Vienna. In this function, he took part to build the Vienna Biocenter, a public private partnership between the Viennese Universities and Boehringer Ingelheim. In 1997, he co-founded Intercell AG, managed the company as CEO, floated it on the Stock Exchange in 2005 and remained CSO until 2009. 2011 he has re-entered the Supervisory Board (SB) and is continuing in this position, after the Company has been merged into the trans-European biotech enterprise, Valneva, listed in Paris and Vienna since 2013, today with two global vaccines on the market and more than 500 employees.
He has been co-founding further biotech firms, served in the advisory board of VC firms and since 2007 is Chairman of the business incubator of the Viennese Universities, INITs initiating more than 300 start-ups and ranking amongst the top ten global University incubators. From 2008 until 2014, he was appointed as founding member of the Governing Board of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), which he chaired from 2011 until the end of his term, 2014. Under his chairmanship, the first three Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs) have been established and the EIT has evolved into an EC funding agency with a multi-billion € budget that has enabled to implement additional KICs in Europe until 2018, including the one on healthy life and active ageing, EIT Health. 2014 he has returned as Deputy Vice-Chancellor to the Karolinska Institutet, where he has taken a three-year commitment to foster Innovation and Commercial Outreach. 2016 he was appointed into the SAB of the Paul Ehrlich Institute. Since September 2017 he is Chairman of the SB of EIT Health, an innovation consortium with about 140 leading partners of the European health arena, including the Karolinska Institutet.
A large number of publications, patents, book chapters, and edition of books, particular in the field of microbiology, immunology and vaccines, have documented his passion for biomedical research and innovation. His achievements have been acknowledged by the virtue of earning industrial awards, academic prizes and honorable memberships, including the Swedish Royal Academy of Engineering Science.