Prof. Matthias Tschöp and Prof. Christian Hertweck
Prof. Matthias Tschöp
Developing therapeutics for diabetes
Adiposity and diabetes are two of the most widespread conditions affecting people in the world today and increase the risk of severe Covid-19 as well as other illnesses such as cancer. Professor Dr. med. Dr. h. c. Matthias H. Tschöp from the Helmholtz Zentrum in Munich and the Technical University of Munich is receiving the Ernst Jung Prize for Medicine 2021 for his outstanding work and discoveries in this field. The award, with a total prize fund of €300,000, is presented each year by the Jung Foundation for Science and Research in Hamburg to leading researchers whose projects make a significant contribution to medical progress.
Matthias Tschöp has been conducting research for more than 20 years into the development of improved active substances against the metabolic disorders of adiposity and diabetes which are prevalent in western industrialised countries. Early in his research career, he made a series of groundbreaking discoveries on the molecular communication between the gastrointestinal tract and the brain. These findings enabled him to develop novel drug candidates, including a separate class of therapeutics known as hormone polyagonists. Many of these polyagonists are now successfully in phase II and III clinical trials and are considered some of the most promising approaches currently available for combating the widespread diseases of adiposity and type 2 diabetes.
Prof. Christian Hertweck
Identifying new active ingredients from nature
Metabolic products of microorganisms from which new antibiotics can be developed: this is one of the topics that Professor Dr. rer. nat. Christian Hertweck from the Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology – Hans-Knöll Institute (HKI) – in Jena is working on. He is now receiving the Ernst Jung Prize for Medicine 2021 for his outstanding research. The award, with a total prize fund of €300,000, is presented each year by the Jung Foundation for Science and Research in Hamburg to leading researchers whose projects make a significant contribution to medical progress.
Many substances produced by bacteria and fungi can lead to illness or poisoning. Others are able to cure infectious diseases, such as antifungals or antibiotics. The goal of Christian Hertweck’s research is to identify toxins and virulence factors as well as pharmacologically relevant substances and to understand how and why they form in microorganisms. Hertweck is deputy director at the Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology – Hans-Knöll Institute (HKI) – in Jena as well as head of the department for Biomolecular Chemistry there. He is also head of the Professorship for Natural Product Chemistry at Friedrich Schiller University in Jena.