Université de Strasbourg

Ernst-Ludwig Winnacker

Ernst-Ludwig WinnackerErnst-Ludwig Winnacker was Secretary General of the Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP) from 2009-2015. He studied chemistry at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich) where he obtained his Ph.D. in 1968. After postdoctoral work at the University of California in Berkeley and the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm from 1968 to 1972, he became assistant and then DFG Visiting Professor at the Institute for Genetics, University of Cologne. In 1977 he was appointed Associate Professor at the Institute of Biochemistry at the Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich where he was made full professor in 1980. From 1984 to 1997, professor Winnacker was Director of the Laboratory of Molecular Biology at the University of Munich Gene Center. He served as President of the German Research Foundation (DFG) from 1998 to 2006. From 2003 to 2004 he also chaired the European Heads of Research Councils (EUROHORCs). He served as Secretary General of the European Research Council (ERC) from 2007 to 2009.

Professor Winnacker is a member of the US National Academies of Sciences, Institute of Medicine and of the German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina. His main fields of research are virus/cell interaction, the mechanisms of gene expression in higher cells and prion diseases. His achievements have been recognized with numerous honours and awards, among which the Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur, the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland, the International Science and Technology Cooperation Award of the People’s Republic of China, the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star of Japan, the Grand Cross with Star (Knight Commander's Cross) of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, and the Robert Koch Gold Medal.

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