River Stone is an integrated synthetic biology company. Synthetic Biology is disrupting multiple industries, including pharma biologics. The massive advances in synthetic biology over the past decade mean that creating and producing chemistry using biological approaches is cheaper, faster, more diverse, and more scalable than ever before.

We combine state-of-the-art synthetic biology with extensive experience in making, scaling and launching products, with particular expertise in small molecules  and ADMET improvement. Our technologies include powerful gene integration tools, analytical systems biology, enzyme design & evolution, strain optimization, fermentation scale-up and DSP.

River Stone is headquartered in Cambridge, Mass. with a subsidiary in Copenhagen, Denmark.


Gly-Kit Product

CNS Actives

In-Situ Bio-actives

Synbio Tools


River Stone was founded in 2016 with a focus on API production route re-engineering.  Our team has a track record in building pioneering synthetic biology and life science ventures.  The team has brought multiple synbio and pharma products to market.

Key individuals, and their group level roles, are:


Paul Goldenheim, CEO

Paul is trained as a pulmonary physician and is currently working as a director and consultant in the field of biotechnology, serving on the boards of directors of several companies including Adenium, and Hydra Biosciences. Paul has a long history in pharmaceutical research, development, and management, most recently as President of TransForm Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Johnson & Johnson) and Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors of Hypnion (acquired by Eli Lilly). Paul also serves on the board of directors of Celebrity Series of Boston. Dr. Goldenheim received his AB from Harvard College magna cum laude with highest honors in biochemical sciences and his MD from Harvard Medical School.

Jørgen Hansen, CSO, CEO Denmark

From 2013-2018, Jørgen served as Evolva’s Chief Scientific Officer, running a five-site R&D organization with the full complement of synthetic biology, from idea stage and bioinformatics over strain development to scale-up of upstream and downstream processes. Before that and since 2005, he has directed the activities of the Evolva Copenhagen laboratory. Previously he worked at Poalis Biotech, a biotech startup from University of Copenhagen, Carlsberg Laboratory, the Danish Technical University and Aarhus University.

Neil Goldsmith, CBO

From 2004 to 2017, Neil was co-founder, CEO and board member of Evolva SA, taking it from a startup biotech venture to a leading synthetic biology company listed on the Swiss stock exchange. He was previously a co-founder of Topotarget A/S, which is listed on the Copenhagen exchange, and of Personal Chemistry AB, which became Biotage AB, and is listed on NASDAQ Stockholm. Prior to that he held management roles in Phytera Inc, PNAD A/S and Biacore AB, amongst other life science ventures. He is a board member of Unibio International plc, Double Bioventures Ltd, and Prospero Biotech Ltd.

Paula Hicks, SVP Technology & IP

Paula has 20 years of technology expertise in diverse industries utilizing biotechnology. From 2011 to 2018 Paula held several senior technical leadership roles at Evolva, Inc. successfully scaling up multiple projects and managing programs with industrial, university, and government partners. Prior to that she served as a technical program manager for biopharmaceutical projects at Bend Research, Inc. (now Lonza). Hicks started her career at Cargill leading development of new processes for food ingredients. She holds a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from North Carolina State University.

Esben Halkjær Hansen, VP, R&D

Esben has 14 years of experience within microbial production strain development, pathway discovery, and optimization. From 2011-2017, Esben served as Program Manager at Evolva, running several different strain development programs and has successfully brought projects from idea phase, over strain optimization to production. Previously he has worked at Poalis Biotech. He has a PhD in Molecular Biology/Pharmaceutical Science from University of Copenhagen.


We have recently joined the Medicon Valley Alliance

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