Atta Behfar, M.D., Ph.D.


Dr. Behfar is a serial entrepreneur and innovator in the regenerative medicine field. His work has led to the development of several regenerative technologies, including cardiopoietic stem cells, which completed phase 2/3 trials in Europe and was approved by the FDA for phase 3 pivotal testing. Recently, Dr. Behfar has focused on the design of novel biomatrices, exosome, and RNA platforms to augment the retention of regenerative biologics in order to facilitate cell-free endogenous repair. These new technologies serve as the basis for Rion with an eye towards developing technological platforms that fundamentally change the approach to regenerative medicine by delivering low cost and off-the-shelf therapies for a broad array of medical applications. In addition to being cofounder and CEO of Rion, he is Director of Cardiac Regeneration at Mayo Clinic, where he specializes in heart transplant and invasive cardiac procedures. Previously, Dr. Behfar was Director of Research at Cardio3 BioScience, which was acquired by Celyad Oncology, after which he served as Special Scientific Advisor. Dr. Behfar holds an M.D. from the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine and a Ph.D. in stem cell biology and molecular pharmacology and therapeutics from the Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. He earned his B.S. in biochemistry and mathematics from Marquette University.

Atta Behfar, M.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Behfar's professional highlights include:

  • Winner, Herman K. Gold Young Investigator Award — American College of Cardiology, 2010
  • General Mills Foundation Fellow — Clinician Investigator Program, 2009-present
  • Presidential Award — American Society for Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics, 2005