Hybridize Therapeutics

“Protecting the kidney with targeted, proprietary RNA therapeutics”

Watch Video

Changing the lives of kidney patients

Our focus: protecting kidneys

  • 1:7 people in the US are at risk of developing kidney disease.
  • 790K people live with kidney failure in the US alone.
  • $130B Medicare spends on chronic kidney disease yearly.


Our kidneys are a beautiful organ with more than one million filtering units that filter our blood from waste and toxic compounds. Sadly, 1 out of 10 people in this world do not have healthy kidneys, which means that waste builds up in their body. When kidney disease worsens to end stage renal disease (ESRD), a patient must rely on a dialysis machine 3×4 hours per week to filter their blood to survive. To put the problem in perspective: chronic kidney disease leads to 1.2 million deaths and 28 million years of life lost each year. Furthermore, right now > 790 thousand people suffer from kidney failure in the US alone.


At Hybridize, we want to protect those precious kidneys and prevent people from reaching ESRD.

Kidney targeted RNA therapeutics

Our technology

“We develop kidney targeted RNA-based therapies for patients with acute and chronic kidney diseases. Our therapies are designed to protect the kidney with high target specificity.”


We believe strongly that RNA-based therapeutics are a very powerful class of therapeutics. They can be designed to be highly disease target specific, chemically modified for a desired half life of up to months and can be coupled to conjugates for cell type specific delivery.


We are leading cutting edge research on improved delivery to specific kidney cells to become the kidney navigation expert. This is vital, as it improves the therapeutic window and opens new treatment paradigms for currently untreated kidney diseases.

Background Hybridize Therapeutics & the rich ecosystem in Leiden

Our background

Hybridize is a spin-off from the Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC). The LUMC has been a frontrunner in both Nephrology & RNA-based medicine. Prof. Dr. Willem Kolff, inventor of the kidney dialysis machine (1943), studied Medicine at the LUMC, while Prof. Dr. Jacques van Boom played a pivotal pioneering role in oligonucleotide chemistry (1975). 


Dr. Eric van der Veer (Founder Hybridize) started his own reseach group in the Nephrology Department of the LUMC in 2007. His extensive research period (2007-2019) focused mainly on RNA biology, RNA-based therapies and kidney diseases. In September 2019, Hybridize spun out from the LUMC with a new RNA therapy inhibiting BK virus (kidney virus). In February 2022, Hybridize announced a €100M partnership deal with AiCuris for outlicensing its BK-virus program.


Currently, Hybridize focuses on its platform technology that improves delivery of siRNA with an initial focus on the proximal tubule epithelial cells (PTECs). This technology provides an enormous opportunity that has been lacking in this field of the industry: successful deployment of siRNA therapies for kidney diseases. Clinical focus areas are: Cardiorenal Disease, Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease (ADPKD), Acute Kidney Injury (AKI) after cardiac surgery and tubulointerstitial fibrosis in Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD).

News updates and media gallery

Press room

All PR related information can be found in the press room page here

AiCuris and Hybridize Therapeutics enter worldwide license agreement of up to €100M for a direct-acting RNA-based therapy against BK Virus

Read more..

Treating kidney inflammation / fibrosis


Polyomaviruses (BKV & JCV)

BK virus & JC virus are part of the polyomavirus family. Both reside in a permissive form in the urinary tract in 60-90% of the general population. In an immunocompromised patient, they can reactivate and kill the organ in which they replicate. No (effective) treatment exists for both viruses.


BK virus
BK virus can wreak havoc in kidney transplant patients, where it slowly destroys the transplanted kidney allograft leading to (premature) allograft loss. In addition, in hematopoietic stem cell transplant patients, BK virus causes an extremely painful, bleeding bladder infection leading up to months prolonged hospitalization.


JC virus
JC virus can become activated in severely immunocompromised patients and can relocate to the central nervous system. Here it leads to the brain disease: progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy. Symptoms include cognitive / behavioral abnormalities, sensory & motor deficits, speech impairments, seizures and rapid death.


At Hybridize Therapeutics, we are developing antisense oligonucleotides that target the Achilles’ heel of polyomaviruses. This is the only therapeutic in development that is a direct acting anti-viral which works intra-cellular and protects the cells from within. It is designed to target the viral mRNA and therefore provides for low off-target effects.

PTEC-targetable diseases

Our primary focus lies on developing RNA therapeutics for the Proximal Tubule Epithelial Cell (PTEC) – the main culprit of many kidney diseases and downstream complications.

PTEC related diseases
The main function of the PTEC is reabsorption of many different compounds through specific reabsorption transporters. In some diseases, specific compounds are present in too high concentrations in the bloodstream, leading to all sorts of complications. Examples are phosphate leading to vascular calcification & cardiorenal problems or uric acid leading to chronic gout & kidney damage.

Secondly, the PTEC is the first cell type after the filtration barrier (glomerulus) and has an important role in keeping the rest of the nephron healthy. Protecting the PTEC is of utmost important in keeping the entire nephron healthy in cases of cilia-related diseases, such as Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease (ADPKD).

Thirdly, the PTEC has a high energy & oxygen consumption, thereby being prone to damage due to oxygen depriviation in cardiac surgery settings.

Finally, the PTEC is believed to be the first cell type to instigate inflammatory & fibrotic cascades leading to interstitial remodelling.

Target Viral Discovery Lead opt. IND Phase 1/2 Phase 2/3 Injury HYB_BKV UNDISCLOSED Viral UNDISCLOSED Genetic UNDISCLOSED

Our people


CEO of Hybridize. Founder & former-CEO of Nightbalance – MedTech scale-up sold to Phillips Heathcare

Eline van Beest


Founder and Chief Innovation Officer of Hybridize. Spent >12y as postdoc at the Leiden University Medical Center working on RNA therapies & kidney diseases

Dr. Eric van der Veer

CIO & Founder

Over 30 years experience in nephrology understanding key pathological processes in chronic kidney disease and translating these to therapeutic molecules. Previously spent 10 years as Head of fibrotic remodelling at UCB taking zampilimab to Phase 2 for the treatment of chronic allograft nephropathy & 2.5 years as Head of Target Discovery at Mestag Therapeutics”

Prof. Dr. Tim Johnson


Extensive experience in clinical and non-clinical drug development strategy with specific interest in RNA-based therapeutics, ADME and orphan diseases.

Dr. Jessica Sipkens


Main role to be the bridge between business (CEO) & science (CSO). Alex has an educational background in both Biopharmaceutical Science & Biomedical Engineering, followed by a professional career as a strategy consultant at Bain & Company and starting as first employee at Hybridize Therapeutics.

Alexander Mentink

Head of BD / Chief of Staff

Head of CMC of Hybridize. Extensive experience in defining phase-appropriate CMC strategy (preclinical up to phase 3) in both big pharma and small biotech companies.

Dr. Miranda de Jager

Head of CMC

Professional with more than 10 years of experience in biopharmaceutical development across multiple therapeutic areas, with special focus on oligonucleotides, RNA and rare diseases. Strong record leading multidisciplinary teams through Translational and Early Clinical Development

Patricia Biasutto

Head of Translational Science

Jurriën Prins is the the scientific co-founder of our therapy against BK virus and working as post-doc researcher at the department of Nephrology of the LUMC. He studied the role of RNA-binding proteins and various RNA-based therapeutic modalities. He combines bio-informatic approaches with experimental lab work to further the development of antisense therapies.

Jurriën Prins

Senior Scientist

Dr. Falk Wachowius’ research interests lie primarily in the area of nucleic acid biochemistry. He is currently mainly dedicated to the development of oligonucleotides that target viral (sub)genomic RNA to inhibit virus replication. Before this he held research positions at the MRC-LMB in Cambridge and the University of Groningen.

Dr. Falk Wachowius

Senior Scientist

Barbara is a passionate scientist with several years of experience in biopharma industry with a special focus in the immune inflammation field. She has extensive experience in assay development for targets discovery and validation in immunological disease areas

Barbara Cambi


All-round researcher at Hybridize. Worked for 12 years in the LUMC as research technician and PhD student. Studied the role of inflammation in cardiac and vascular remodelling, including the potential therapeutic effect of gene silencing oligo’s, and worked on the identification of neoantigen specific peptides as possible therapeutic targets against AML.

Dr. Rob de Jong


Loes Wiersma


Janneke Kouwenberg is a research technician in the Hybridize Therapeutics laboratory team. Besides working with cell based assays and molecular techniques, she has an extensive interest in fluorescence (confocal) microscopy. 

Janneke Kouwenberg

Senior Researcher

Researcher at Hybridize Therapeutics with the ambition to improve the lives of kidney patients. She has a Bio-Pharmaceutical Sciences background and worked before at the Target Discovery and Validation department of Galapagos.

Iris van Wissen

Junior Scientist

Chaja is a researcher with a background in regenerative medicine, as she is passionate about improving the quality of life for patients. She has experience with complex culture techniques and oligonucleotide research.

Chaja Hudepol


Onno van de Stolpe founded Galapagos in 1999 and has served as CEO from 1999 to the present. From 1998 to 1999, he was the Managing Director of Genomics at IntroGene BV (later Crucell NV, which was acquired by Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc. in 2011).

Onno van der Stolpe

ex-CEO Galapagos

From 2002-2021, Dr. John Maraganore has been the CEO and Director of Alnylam ($20B+). Before that he worked for Millennium Pharma as Senior Vice President and Strategic Product Development. Before Millennium he served as Director of Molecular Biology and Director of Market and Business Development at Biogen.

Dr. John Maraganore

Ex-CEO Alnylam Pharmaceuticals

Dr. James Shannon has extensive expertise in clinical drug development. From 2012 until his retirement in 2015, James was Chief Medical Officer at GlaxoSmithKline. Prior to that he was Global Head of Pharma Development at Novartis and Senior Vice-President Clinical Development at Sterling Winthrop Pharmaceuticals.

MD James Shannon

Ex-CMO GlaxoSmithKline

Dr. Dinko Valerio is founder and former CEO of Crucell, and one of the founders of its spinout, Galapagos Genomics. Adding to his corporate experience, Dr. Dinko Valerio was also a professor of gene therapy at the University of Leiden.

Dr. Dinko Valerio

Founder Crucell / Galapagos

Daniel is founder and CEO of ProQR. After one of his children was diagnosed with a rare disease, he started ProQR to develop RNA therapies for rare diseases. Under Daniel’s leadership ProQR developed a diversified pipeline of potential treatments for rare diseases and raised over $300M in funding, including an IPO on Nasdaq.

Daniel de Boer


Dr. Andre Hoekema joined Galapagos as CBO in 2005. Before that he worked for Invitrogen Corporation, where he was Managing Director of Corporate Development Europe. He brings 20 years of biotech experience from many different firms (a.o. Crucell, DSM Life Sciences, Syngenta and Genentech).

Dr. Andre Hoekema

CBO Galapagos

Alison Lawton is a seasoned Biotech Executive with experience as CEO and Independent Directorships at private and public companies. Deep regulatory and commercial/business expertise.

Alison Lawton

ex-CEO Kaleido

Dr. Annemieke Aartsma-Rus is a Professor of Translational Genetics at the Department of Human Genetics at the LUMC. She played an important role in the development of an antisense-mediated exon skipping therapy for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

Prof. Dr. Annemieke Aartsma-Rus

Professor Human Genetics, LUMC

Dr. Gerard Platenburg is co-founder and Chief Innovation Officer at ProQR. Before that, he co-founded Prosensa growing it to become a well-known clinical stage RNA modulation company. He held various positions including CEO and CDO.

Gerard Platenburg


Dr. Lukacher is a Professor of Microbiology, Immunology, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the PennState Cancer Institute.  Dr. Lukacher’s renowned research group has developed a unique mouse model of polyomavirus CNS infection to better understand the immunologic and virologic factors contributing to PML pathogenesis.

Prof. Dr. Aron Lukacher

Prof Microbiology & Immunology PennState

Dr. Troels Koch has 20+ years experience in the life science and biopharmaceutical industry. Founder of several biotech companies of which Exiqon and Santaris Pharma are the most commonly known. Santaris Pharma A/S was successfully exited in August 2014 – acquired by Roche – and Exiqon A/S was acquired in 2016 by Qiagen.

Dr. Troels Koch

ex-CTO, Santaris/Roche

Dr. Anton Jan van Zonneveld is the scientific co-founder of our therapy against BK virus and Professor of Experimental Vascular Medicine at the LUMC. Before that, he was the Managing Director Cardiovascular Research at Crucell. He also serves as a member of the Board of the Dutch Kidney Foundation.

Prof. Dr. Anton Jan van Zonneveld

Laboratory Director


Our Partners