Max Planck Scientists awarded the Dortmund Biomedicine Prize

Max Planck Scientists awarded the Dortmund Biomedicine Prize

Award for medically relevant cutting-edge research for new possibilities in cancer medicine with minimal side effects

September 25, 2020

This year’s Dortmund Biomedicine Award, which is endowed with 2.500 Euros, goes to two young female scientists from the Max Planck Institute (MPI) of Molecular Physiology. A total of four scientists are being honoured for their outstanding work in the field of biomedical research by the Association for the Promotion of Biomedical and Clinical Research.

"Research in the Ruhr Area is almost as diverse as its people," explains the chairman of the association, PD Dr. Kalhoff, leading senior physician at the Klinikum Dortmund. "Many facilities provide cutting-edge research for the benefit of the general public. This is exactly what we would like to support with the Biomedicine Award.”

Bacterial Poison for Medicine - Starving Cancer Cells

The Dortmund junior scientists Dr. Elena Reckzeh and Dr. Evelyn Schubert were awarded for their medically relevant top-level research, which could open up new possibilities in cancer medicine with few side effects. Evelyn’s research in the department of Prof. Dr. Stefan Raunser is on bacterial toxins, that promote infection and disease. Her work contributed to the elucidation of a unique mechanism, where toxins are introduced into host cells by a syringe-like injection process. Evelyn succeeded in exchanging the toxin loaded in the molecular syringe by other substances - a first step towards using this system to introduce medical compounds in cells. Elena Reckzeh from the department of Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Herbert Waldmann was searching during her doctorate for a new way of fighting cancer. Due to their rapid growth cancer cells have a great need for energy, which they cover through increased sugar intake. Here, Elena has developed novel drugs that block the uptake of sugar in cancer cells - as a result, cancer cells starve and die.


In addition to the two MPI scientists, Isabelle Prager and Dr. Ahmed Ghallab from the Leibniz Research Centre for Working Environment and Human Factors (IfADo) were awarded the Biomedicine Prize.



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