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Dates

2018 Award
Award Ceremony: Friday 20 July 2018, EMBL ATC Klaus Tschira Auditorium, Heidelberg

2019 Award
Nominations deadline: Tuesday 31 July 2018
Application deadline: Friday 28 September 2018
Award Ceremony: Friday 19 July 2019, EMBL ATC Klaus Tschira Auditorium, Heidelberg

How to apply

Applicants should complete and submit an application form together with:

  • A summary of your scientific research accomplishments covering work done during and/or after EMBL (no more than 300 words).
  • A detailed description of your innovation in the area of translational research in human health and/or technology innovation (maximum two A4 pages).
  • A CV.

Criteria for applicants:

  1. The award is open to junior and senior alumni alike who are registered members of the EMBL Alumni Association, irrespective of when they left EMBL.
  2. The work described in the application needs to have predominantly been done by the applicant, either as the “bench scientist” or as principal investigator.
  3. The work can entail results obtained during the applicant’s time at EMBL and/or thereafter.

Please note that joint applications cannot be considered.

If your application is unsuccessful in a given year, it can be resubmitted in subsequent years.

We also welcome nominations for the award. Nominees will then be contacted by the EMBL Alumni Relations Office regarding next steps.

List of winners

2018 winner: Raffaele De Francesco
EMBL: Postdoc, Cortese Group, Genome Biology, 1988-1990.
2018: Head of Virology, Institute for Molecular Genetics, Milan, Italy.

“In the early ‘90s, the inability to propagate HCV in the laboratory was seen as a major obstacle to the identification of specific antivirals. Our discoveries of the NS3/4A protease and NS5B polymerase allowed the scientific community to start looking for inhibitors of these key viral enzymes long before we were able to work with the actual virus. The time I spent as a postdoc at EMBL, surrounded by great scientists working in a highly collaborative spirit, was very inspiring and taught me how to always use a multidisciplinary approach to address complex scientific problems.”

Announcement of winner: March 2018

2017 winner: Matthias Mann
EMBL: Group Leader, Instrumentation, 1992-1998.
2017: Director, Department of Proteomics and Signal Transduction, Max Planck Institute for Biochemistry, Germany and
Program Director, the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Protein Research, University of Copenhagen.

“Mass spectrometry has become an indispensable tool in molecular biology and this could not have happened without the fantastic environment at EMBL. My group greatly benefited from the unique concentration of skills, resources, personalities and ambition that characterised the place then and now. I am very happy that we succeeded in making first mass spectrometry and then proteomics a viable part of the tool kit for biologists and I am especially grateful for Lennart Philipson’s unwavering support of this initially exotic technology and of our group. ”

Announcement of winner: March 2017

2016 winner: Ernst Stelzer

EMBL: Group Leader, Cell Biology and Biophysics, 1983-2011.
2016: Professor in the Life Sciences Department (FB15, IZN) and the Buchmann Institute for Molecular Life Sciences (BMLS) at Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

"Light sheet-based fluorescence microscopy is the result of more than 25 years of hard work. It is also an excellent story of a suitable environment that can apply results of research in physics. As a member of several Units, I saw the limits of “flat biology”, the challenges of maintaining a specimen’s three-dimensionality and the necessity for time-lapse imaging. But, I also had the resources to tackle challenges in a biological manner".

Announcement of winner: January 2016

2015 winner: Jacques Dubochet

EMBL: Group Leader, Structural and Computational Biology, 1978-1987.
2015: Retired, Former Professor at University of Lausanne, Morges, Switzerland.

"The basic work was done 30 years ago, at that time we had 35Å resolution. People said it was blobology. Then others made big progresses in data processing and instrumentation. Now, I am retired and they get 3.5Å atomic resolution and the method has become very important. For me, it's very rewarding, interesting and enjoyable."

Announcement of winner: December 2014
Poster - Awards Ceremony, 10 July 2015

About the Award

The Lennart Philipson Award (LPA) was created to honour EMBL’s second Director General, Lennart Philipson (1982-1993). The award has been given once per annum starting in 2015 by the EMBL Alumni Association. It is sponsored by EMBLEM Technology Transfer GmbH (EMBLEM), the wholly owned commercial subsidiary of EMBL.

The Award recognises outstanding and validated contributions in translational research in human health and/or technology innovation in the life sciences. This includes for example: deciphering human disease models; developing new diagnostic tools, methods or therapies; development of enabling technologies in life science (plasmids, strains, human disease-relevant animal-models, screening and production systems); instrumentation development; and bioinformatics.

The award is open to all EMBL alumni irrespective of leaving date. It consists of a gold-plated medal, a cash prize of €7,500 and the logistical costs of bringing the winner to EMBL Heidelberg to present a talk at the Award Ceremony on EMBL Lab Day.