Christoph Steinbeck studied chemistry at the University of Bonn, where he received his diploma and doctoral degree at the Institute of Organic Chemistry. Focus of his Ph. D. thesis was the program LUCY for computer assisted structure elucidation. In 1996, he joined the group of Prof. Clemens Richert at Tufts University in Boston, MA, USA, where he worked in the area of biomolecular NMR on the 3D structure elucidation of peptide-nucleic acid conjugates. In 1997 Christoph Steinbeck became head of the Structural Chemo- and Bioinformatics Workgroup at the newly founded Max-Planck-Institute of Chemical Ecology in Jena, Germany. In fall 2002 he moved to Cologne University Bioinformatics Center (CUBIC) as head of the Research Group for Molecular Informatics. In December 2003 Christoph Steinbeck received his Habilitation in Organic Chemistry from Friedrich-Schiller-University in Jena, Germany. Christoph Steinbeck is editor-in-chief of the Journal of Cheminformatics, a director of the Metabolomics Society, past chairman of the Computers-Information-Chemistry (CIC) division of the German Chemical Society, a lifetime member of the World Association of Theoretically Oriented Chemists (WATOC), and member of various editorial boards and committees. Today, Christoph is head of chemoinformatics and metabolism at the European Bioinformatics Institute (EBI) in Hinxton, Cambridge, UK.
His group develops open chemistry databases for the biosciences, such as ChEBI, the dictionary and ontology of Chemical Entities of Biological Interest, the Enzyme Portal, including IntEnz and Rhea, databases dealing with Enzyme nomenclature and biochemical reactions, and the MetaboLights database, a repository and reference database for Metabolomics. They further develop a number of the leading open source software packages in Chemo- and Bioinformatics, including the Chemistry Development Kit (CDK).
The Steinbeck group’s research is dedicated to natural products research, the elucidation of metabolomes by means of computer-assisted structure elucidation and other prediction methods, the reconstruction of metabolic networks and algorithm development in cheminformatics.