The company

ExcellGene is a privately owned and science-driven company, founded in 2001 by Prof. Florian M. Wurm and led since 2017 by Dr. Maria João Wurm, CEO. We are based in Monthey, Switzerland.

F. Wurm is a former manager and scientist at Genentech Inc. in South San Francisco and was among the pioneering scientists to generate manufacturing processes for the first pharmaceutical proteins made in CHO cells.

Maria J. De Jesus, now Maria J. Wurm, co-founding scientist of ExcellGene, invented and developed several breakthrough technologies as Senior Scientist at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL) in Lausanne. These inventions  have had profound effects on cell line development, and some have attained global application in early R&D work towards clinical manufacturing of biologics. 

ExcellGene caters to clients worldwide and specializes in challenging protein expression goals.

Our mission

ExcellGene will continue to be a driver of science and technology for rapid provisioning and efficient manufacturing of recombinant proteins for research and pharmaceutical applications. Using innovation, flexibility and highest quality in execution, ExcellGene will provide support to life sciences companies that wish to move a protein-based concept rapidly towards clinical use.

Meet the executives

Maria Wurm

Maria Wurm

Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Maria João Wurm, known through her published record as Maria De Jesus (publications), was the first employee of ExcellGene and built the company through increasing responsibilities in managerial tasks. Appointed Chief Executive Officer in January 2017, she previously functioned as Chief Operating Officer for 8 years.

Maria, mother of two, is a frequently invited speaker on international conferences covering protein expression from animal cells and development and scale up of manufacturing approaches. Maria obtained a Master in Environmental Engineering from the University of Lisbon, Portugal and a PhD (Dr. es. Sci.) from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne.

Florian Wurm

Florian Wurm

Chief Scientific Officer, Founder

Dr. Florian Maria Wurm is the founder and chairman of ExcellGene. He guided the scientific and technological innovations of the company as its’ Chief Scientific Officer.

As Professor of Biotechnology at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne for 20 years (1995-2015) he and his students contributed a number of highly referenced innovations of the industry and provided deep insights into the genetics of CHO cells (> 250 publications).

Prior to his appointment in Lausanne, Wurm worked at Genentech Inc. in Process Sciences (1985-95) where he contributed to several products that became blockbuster drugs. Wurm is a trained geneticist (Diploma and PhD) from the Justus Liebig University in Giessen, Germany and was employed at Behringwerke AG in the Department of Virology after his studies during the early 1980s.

Johan Olsson

Johan Olsson

Director of Business Development

Prior to joining ExcellGene, Johan Olsson accumulated more than 15 years experience of consulting within the life sciences industry, while residing in Sweden, the UK and Switzerland. He works as ExcellGene’s Director of Business Development since 2015.  Johan is focussing on the development and implementation of the company’s commercial and partnering strategies, while also interacting closely with the operational team and the scientific leadership at ExcellGene to identify and grow internal value assets.

Before joining ExcellGene SA, he founded JMO Advisory and was a partner at Venture Valuation AG, Switzerland. At the company Pharmalicensing he led a partnering consulting division targeting the life science industry. Johan holds a M.Sc. in molecular biology from Karolinska Institutet Stockholm where he conducted oncology research and obtained a BBA in finance from Södertörn University, Sweden.

Martin Schmid

Martin Schmid

Chief Financial Officer

Martin Schmid holds an Executive MBA in integrated Management from the University of Applied Science Fribourg, Switzerland and a BBA in Finance.

Before joining ExcellGene SA and co-founded of JMO Advisory and Associates Sarl, Martin developed and implemented tailored solutions in the fields of strategic planning, finance, project- and change-management as well as quality improvement audits in startup companies.

He acquired a large experience as CEO, CFO and Director of  strategic- and M&A-projects in major food transformation companies.

World-wide work

ExcellGene has assisted more than a hundred clients since inception, which include 6 of the top 10 pharma companies, biotech companies, contract research organizations and academic institutions.

Clients choose ExcellGene due to our unique scientific expertise, and a highly personalized, communicative approach towards each project. This approach ensures that project objectives are met and delivered on time.

Who are our clients?




Big pharma





ExcellGene has a very deep understanding of the nuances of CHO cell clone development. We have seen in multiple projects that their thorough process ensures that each step is done right.

David Block

CEO, Gliknik Inc.

Why ExcellGene?

ExcellGene’s unique protein expression technologies (transient/stable) and manufacturing processes are based on proprietary CHOexpress™ cells – a system with superior features over others.

Similar achievements were obtained for HEK-293 and for insect cells. The company’s services cover the value chain from DNA construction and transfection to scalable process and manufacture.


ExcellGene is proud to celebrate 15 years of successful service to the global Bio-Pharma industry by rapidly providing candidate molecules to the hands of researchers and by developing high-yielding cell culture based manufacturing processes for clinical production.

Ready to kickstart your projects?

©ExcellGene S.A., Route de l’Ile-au-Bois 1A, 1870 Monthey, Switzerland.

The company

ExcellGene operates in Monthey, Switzerland and is a science-driven company, founded by Prof. Florian Wurm in 2001.

A former manager and scientist at Genentech, Wurm generated some of the first pharmaceutical proteins from CHO cells. He is recognized world-wide as a leader in CHO technologies and a pioneer of the protein-based pharmaceutical industry.

Wurm also expanded insights into process sciences with CHO cells (genetics to process) during 20 years of research at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL).

ExcellGene caters to clients worldwide and specializes in challenging protein expression goals.