The Defymed team

Defymed’s main asset, its team, was put together from a scientific, quality or even regulatory point of view with the aim of combining different complementary skills sets while also being dynamic and proactive.

A feature of the Defymed team is its commitment and professionalism within a rigorous yet friendly working environment.

Executive management

Séverine Sigrist

PhD, Chief Executive Officer

Séverine founded Defymed in 2011 and has since participated in the growth and international expansion of the start-up. With more than 20 years of scientific and management experience, Séverine puts her expertise at the service of Defymed’s development. She is ably supported by a motivated, proactive multidisciplinary team, guaranteeing the success of Defymed.

  • She holds a doctorate in life sciences from the University of Strasbourg and is the author of more than 50 scientific publications and several patents
  • As the director of the laboratory of the Centre européen d’étude du Diabète (European center for diabetes study), she has proven experience in management and project management
  • She has launched many projects dealing with type 1 and type 2 diabetes: survival of pancreatic islets after isolation, oral insulin therapy, macro-encapsulation of insulin-secreting cells, etc.
  • As president of the health competitiveness cluster, Biovalley France, since 2014, she is involved in promoting the innovation of Alsatian SMEs and their international competitiveness
  • In 2012, she was designated to be a “golden woman” by winning the Women in Innovation award, receiving the Rhineland Science Academy award and was made a Knight of the National Order of Merit in 2013. In 2014, she won the Irène Joliot Curie competition in the “Women in Business” category. As a result of these honors, Séverine has earned national and international recognition

Richard Bouaoun

PhD, Chief operating officer

Richard was with Defymed before its creation and joined the company from its inception in 2011. With in excess of 10 years’ experience in scientific research and support for innovative biotechnology start-ups, Richard was involved with Defymed from the very start in the company’s strategic choices, coordinating collaborative scientific programs, raising funds and monitoring the numerous institutional and industrial partnerships.

  • He has a doctorate in molecular and cellular biology under the direction of Prof Jules Hoffmann (Nobel Prize winner) and a master’s degree in innovative project management from the Strasbourg school of management
  • Prior to joining Defymed, Richard was a project manager of the SEMIA business incubator that specializes in strategic support for creating or developing innovative biotechnology start-ups
  • Teacher and coach in start-up strategy at the University of Strasbourg
  • Former member of the board of the Field Service Medical Europe, he was also co-host of the Alsatian network of the “innovation winners”, demonstrating his great interest in breakthrough innovations in the medical field

Elisa Maillard-Pedracini

PhD, Chief Scientific Officer

Elisa joined the company in 2020. With her 16 years experienced in cell therapy (research and clinics), in project and people management, she leads the R&D department of Defymed. This department is in charge of preclinical and clinical validation of MailPan® and ExOlin® and also the R&D related to new products and new applications.

  • Elisa holds a doctorate in Life Science from the University of Strasbourg, that was performed on cell encapsulation and oxygenation. After a postdoctoral fellowship in the University of Oxford (UK) as an active member of Islet Transplant Research Group, she was appointed in the Centre européen d’étude du Diabète (European center for diabetes study) as R&D Manager and then Team Leader from 2012 to 2019.
  • She authored more than 30 peer scientific articles and book chapters, all related to the translational research she’s performed over the years. Biomaterials, oxygenation and cell therapy are her scientific predilection topics.
  • Optimistic and benevolent by nature, she leads projects with her collaborators in a participative and dynamic way

Thierry Mignot

Chief financial officer

With more than 20 years of experience as chief financial officer, Thierry facilitated the financial and human resources structuring of Defymed and put together complex financial packages. Today, Thierry manages the administrative, accounting, financial, fiscal, legal and human resources aspects of Defymed.

  • Having completed a Master’s Degree in management control, accountancy and financial management
  • As a shared CFO for several innovative start-ups and SMEs, Thierry supports young companies in their growth and their structuring needs
  • Having been with Defymed since its creation, Thierry perfectly understands Defymed’s aspirations and shares its long-term development vision.

Charles-Thibault Burcez

Engineer, Product development director

Charles-Thibault joined Defymed in 2012 as head of quality and regulatory affairs. Today, thanks to his responsibilities in managing the design of MailPan®, the sub-contractors and processes involved and his experience acquired at Defymed, Charles-Thibault is in charge of the development of all of Defymed’s medical devices including the quality and regulatory aspects of this development.

  • He has a biomedical engineering degree from ISIFC and a master’s degree in tissue and cellular engineering from the University of Franche-Comté
  • Supported by the team, Charles-Thibault has set up rigorous quality procedures which have led to Defymed being certified, since 2014, in accordance with the ISO 13485: 2003, EN ISO 13485: 2012 and ISO 9001: 2008 standards.
  • In charge of coordinating the regulatory strategy for Defymed’s medical devices
  • He is rigorous and enthusiastic and works in direct contact with the sub-contractors

Karine Gouget-Kaufman

PhD, Clinical Project Manager

Karine has joined the company in September 2017. With her 8 years’ experience in scientific research and 7 years in clinical research, Karine is involved in developing clinical research strategy of Defymed devices and ensuring appropriate preparation & conduct of the trials foreseen.

  • She holds a doctorate in microbiology, molecular & cellular biology by having finalized a collaboration between fundamental research lab of Dr Monique Bolotin Fukuhara (CNRS UMR 8621) & hospital patient’s dedicated unit of Pr Arnold Munnich (INSERM U393, “hôpital Necker-Enfants Malades”). After a post-doctorate position in the USA, she obtained the Clinical Research Associate (CRA) certificate from the “Institut Léonard de Vinci”.
  • Her carrier as fundamental researcher had always been oriented to health, by new insights in understanding patients’ metabolic diseases.
  • Prior to joining Defymed, Karine was a Senior CRA at PAREXEL, dealing with a dozen of clinical trial protocols for big pharmaceutical laboratories in various therapeutic areas, and Juniorr CRA at Quintiles, dealing with many pathological areas. Karine was also a CRA & project coordinator at CERC, in pre- & post-market studies for cardiac therapeutic strategies & implantable devices.