Helmuth is co-founder and until March 2023 CEO and executive board director of Citryll. He has more than 30 years of experience in the health and life sciences as a scientist and entrepreneur. He has an MSc in Biology/Chemistry and a Ph.D. in Medicine from the University of Amsterdam; his Ph.D. work was on genetic disorders in bilirubin and drug metabolism. Subsequently he was a postdoctoral researcher at Einstein College in New York, and later at McGill University in Montreal, Canada where he worked on drug resistance in malaria. He started his biotech career as a senior scientist at IntroGene, Crucell (now part of J&J). At IntroGene he was responsible for stem cell-based gene therapies for Gaucher disease in partnership with Genzyme. He then co-authored the business plan for Galapagos with former Crucell CEO Ronald Brus to co-found Galapagos. At Galapagos he was Head of Science of the Leiden site under the leadership of CEO Onno van de Stolpe until 2006. He co-developed the strategy of the company that then moved from an adenoviral RNAi technology platform company to a biology driven, drug discovery, development and commercial company. His therapeutic area expertise includes osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, hearing loss, SLE, Dengue, bacterial infections and cystic fibrosis. As part of the Galapagos team he was responsible for setting up alliances with companies like GSK, Bayer, Incyte and Celgene and the CF foundation. Helmuth is co-inventor of the Galapagos discovery including the groundbreaking industrial application of RNAi.
In 2006 he co-founded a number of companies. Audion Therapeutics BV, is now a pioneering clinical stage, regenerative medicine, small molecule based company focusing on treating acquired hearing loss originally built on intellectual property from Professor Albert Edge (co-founder) at Harvard in Boston. He is co-inventor of LY3056480 a small molecule Notch inhibitor currently in the final stages of phase 2.. He co-founded Effecta Pharma Ltd, discovering antivirals for Dengue and related viruses. He is co-founder and board member of Antabio in France, UK, USA, a company focusing on a new generation of anti-bacterials combatting antibiotic drug resistance. He has advised number of companies including the France, USA, and China based antibody discovery and development company Hifibio.