Miklós Bodanszky Award

The Miklós Bodanszky Award is presented in commemoration of his outstanding contributions to peptide science.  The award is given to the scientist who made significant contributions to peptide-based drug research in the period of ten years after having obtained the PhD degree. The Award is presented during the EPS Symposium and is sponsored by BCN Peptides.

The 2016 awardees are Maja Köhn and Markus Muttenthaler. Congratulations!

 The 2016 awardees are Dr. Maja Köhn & Dr. Markus  Muttenthaler


Dr. Maja Köhn, European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Germany, is recognized for her critical contributions to the design of peptides targeting protein phosphatases that are involved in diseases such as cancer and diabetes. Protein phosphatases have in the past been deemed undruggable. Her methods comprise chemical synthesis, biochemistry, molecular cell biology and bioinformatics. Her design strategies specific to the peptides of interest led to cell-penetrating and cell-stable bioactive peptide probes. Specifically, her group designed the first selective chemical modulator of protein phosphatase-1 activity, which is a cell-penetrating peptide that disrupts protein–protein interactions. In addition, they developed a computational prediction pipeline for phosphopeptide substrates of phosphatases, and phosphonopeptides as commercially accessible tools that can be used for inhibition, in-cell detection and precipitation of phosphatases. Furthermore, Dr. Köhn’s group set up and maintains an open access database, www.depod.org, on phosphatases and their substrates for applications in basic research and drug discovery.

In recognition of her work, Dr. Köhn was awarded a starting grant of the European Research Council, the Tetrahedron Young Investigator Award for Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry, the Friedmund Neumann Prize of the Schering Foundation and the Friedrich Weygand Prize of the Max-Bergmann-Circle. She has published over 40 papers, reviews and book chapters, serves in the Editorial Advisory Boards of ACS Chemical Biology and Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry, and is a founding organizer of the EMBO Conference Series: Chemical Biology.

Dr. Markus Muttenthaler, Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland, is a Biological and Medicinal Chemist with a strong passion for translational research. His interests lie in the exploration of nature’s diversity to develop molecular tools, diagnostics and therapeutics with applications in neuropathic pain, autism, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.

He is internationally recognized for his expertise in venom peptide discovery, his work in the oxytocin/vasopressin field, and his pioneering methodologies in peptide chemistry. His most significant contributions include the innovative use of selenochemistry for the peptide drug development pipeline and his novel strategies towards producing a complete molecular toolbox for the oxytocin/vasopressin signaling system. The quality of his research has been acknowledged through multiple awards, invited lectures and prestigious fellowships including two Marie Curie and one Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Research Award fellowships.

The Miklós Bodanszky Award will be presented at the Opening Ceremony (Sunday, September 4, 16:30-19:00, Auditorium Maximum, Paulinum) of the 34th European Peptide Symposium, Leipzig, Germany.