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Ohlson, Sten


Sten, Ohlson

Ohlson, Sten
Lee Wee Nam Visiting Professor

Office: 02s-57
Telephone: 6316 7866 Or 9170 1064


Academic Background

  • PhD (Engineering, Biochemistry) Lund University, Sweden 1981
  • MSc (Engineering, Chemistry) Lund University, Sweden 1975


Sten Ohlson is an applied biochemist and a biotechnologist educated at Lund University, Sweden. After academic studies, Sten went to the biotechnology- and life science industry in Sweden (Gambro, Perstorp) and USA (HyClone Labs) where he spent thirteen years as manager and director of research. Parallel to his industrial assignments he became an Associate Professor in Biochemistry at Lund University in 1987. In 1993 he returned to Academia where he was a founding Associate Professor of the Biomedical Chemistry Centre of the University of Kalmar in Sweden. In 1999, Sten Ohlson was appointed full Professor in Applied Biochemistry and Head of the Biotechnology division at the University of Kalmar and later in 2010 he was a Professor and Head of the Biotechnology group of Linnaeus University (a fusion of Kalmar and Vaxjo Universities in Sweden). Sten Ohlson has done major pioneering contributions in Cell Culture Engineering as it relates to whole-cell catalysts and novel growth media, developments and applications of SPR for studies of transient biological interactions and introduction of novel techniques in affinity chromatography (HPLAC and WAC). Further, he has introduced the concepts of transient drugs and continuous biosensors based on dynamic biological interactions. Sten Ohlson is also a bioentrepreneur and has founded four life-science companies in Sweden (Perstorp Biolytica, ProLiff, KalBiotech and Transientic Interactions). Sten is now currently the Lee Wee Nam Visiting Professor at School of Biological Sciences (SBS) at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) where he is establishing a research group in drug discovery and clinical diagnostics.

Research Interests

Prof. Sten Ohlson´s research group is mainly concentrated into two areas of study:

  • The prime research area is the study of the biological interactome where Sten Ohlson has focused his efforts on advancing the knowledge (fundamental and applications) on weak or transient biological interactions. These type of interactions are ubiquitous in the living cell and they play a vital role in sustaining life. As they are hard to see and are often mistaken as non-specific and non-relevant, their presence and their mission are to a large extent unknown. Understanding the nature of transient interactions has important consequences in life-science in terms of evolving the concept of the transient drug, introducing new tools for screening in drug discovery and last but not least developing the concepts of the transient biosensor that can monitor targets in real time and in a continuous manner. Of special importance has been the development of WAC (affinity LC/MS) for fragment screening in drug discovery and the introduction of the continuous biosensor for monitoring of carbohydrates such as glucose for diabetes control.
  • The second area is developments in cell culture engineering with emphasis on new culture media for animal cells especially stem cells.