Professor Hopfner receives The Leibniz Prize

Karl-Peter Hopfner is investigating how the cells of the body constantly repair damage of the DNA, which threatens to destroy the genetic information.


Prof. Dr. Karl-Peter Hopfner
Gene Center of the LMU

A biochemist at the LMU, Professor Karl-Peter Hopfner has been awarded this year’s Leibniz Prize. The prize is considered the most prestigious award in German science. This year ten scientists received the prize, with prize money of 2.5 million Euro. Hopfner received the prize for his investigations into how cells continuously repair damage to the DNA, which threatens to destroy the genetic information. Every day, the DNA is damaged about 100,000 times – in every single cell of the body. Such damage can trigger serious diseases. At the LMU Gene Center, Hopfner analyzes the complex molecular machines that detect and repair faults in the cells or remove defective building blocks. Using state-of-the-art techniques, such as X-ray crystallography or cyro-electron microscopy, he elucidates the structure and function of the molecular complexes – a prerequisite for subsequently deriving therapies and drugs. Hopfner was born in 1968 and is currently a professor of biochemistry at the LMU Gene Center.