Ralph E. (Chris) Christoffersen, Ph.D.


Chris joined Morgenthaler Ventures in 2001. Based in Boulder, Colorado, he is focusing on new biotechnology investments. Previously, he was the President and CEO of Ribozyme Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a Morgenthaler portfolio biotechnology company with a mission to commercialize the Nobel Prize-winning discovery of ribozymes for use as human therapeutics. He currently serves on seven corporate boards, and achieved successful exits with Threshold Pharmaceuticals, Avidia Biosciences, Morphotek, Inc., Orexigen, and FoldRX.

He also served as the Senior Vice President of Research at SmithKline Beecham, and Vice President of Discovery Research at The Upjohn Company, and President of Colorado State University.

Chris received an honorary doctor of law degree from Cornell College in 1983, the “Outstanding Research of Year” Award from the International Society of Quantum Biology in 1981, the “W. E. Upjohn Award” for contributions in biotechnology in 1988, and a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003 from the Colorado Biosciences Association.


Cornell College (B.S. in Chemistry and Mathematics, Honorary J.D.), Indiana University (Ph.D. in Chemistry)

Board Seats:

  • Calithera Biosciences
  • Catalyst Biosciences
  • Elcelyx Therapeutics
  • Galleon Pharmaceuticals
  • GlobeImmune
  • Scioderm
  • Stemgent
  • Tragara Pharmaceuticals


Life sciences

Ralph E. (Chris) Christoffersen, Ph.D.


Hi-Res Photo