11. July 2022

Bayer Thesis Prize 2021 & BIGS DrugS Kick-Off Meeting Bayer Thesis Prize 2021 & BIGS DrugS Kick-Off Meeting

In cooperation with the Pharma Center Bonn and the Limes Institute, Bayer AG has again awarded three prizes for outstanding PhD theses in the field of drug research. The award ceremony took place together with the postponed kick-off meeting of the BIGS DrugS Class 2021.

Bayer AG Thesis Prize 2021
Bayer AG Thesis Prize 2021 - Names of the awardees and titles of their doctoral theses © D. Müssemeier
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After two years of exclusively virtual meetings, this year's awards were presented in person. And the postponed BIGS-DrugS kick-off meeting finally took place. Both events took place as a combined event. Following the scientific lecture program, a cheerful party was celebrated in bright weather.

Prof. Christa E. Müller opened the event in lecture hall one of the Pharmaceutical Institute and welcomed all attendees. Dr. Nils Burkhardt, Bayer AG, then honored the three winners of the Bayer PhD Thesis Award 2021. The awardees are the former BIGS DrugS PhD students:

  • Dr. (PhD) Marie-Thérèse Hopp - Investigation of the procoagulant role of labile heme under hemolytic condittions (AK Prof. Diana Imhof)
  • Dr. (PhD) Tim Klapschinki - Rationales Design und Aufbau DNA- und Fluorophor-markierter chemischer Sonden für G-Protein-gekoppelte Sonden (AK Prof. Christa E. Müller)
  • Dr. (PhD) Eva Marie Pfeil - G protein coupled receptors require active Gαq to mobilize Gi-Gßy-dependent calcium (AK Prof. Evi Kostenis)


Before the ceremony, the award winners, their supervisors and Dr. Nils Burkhardt got to know each other in a private setting. Besides the vice speaker of the Pharma Center, Prof. Christa E. Müller, the Limes Institute was represented by Prof. Waldemar Kolanus. The PhD prizes are awarded to young scientists from both institutions.

A special highlight was the keynote speech held by Prof. Stefan Laufer (Professor of Pharm. Chemistry at the University of Tübingen) on the topic "Why Academic Drug Discovery? Tuebingen's Approach!". In a stirring and inspiring manner, Prof. Laufer gave insights into the extremely successful academic drug discovery at the University of Tübingen.

Dorothee Müssemeier (BIGS DrugS) & Clara Kaminsky (Bonn Graduate Center) informed the BIGS DrugS PhD students about the three-year BIGS DrugS training program as well as the many opportunities that the Argelander Program at the University of Bonn offers PhD students.

Other highlights included short presentations by BIGS DrugS PhD students from the Classes of 2018 & 2019:

  • Anna Böhmer (AK Prof. Ulrich Jaehde) entitled "Development and validation of the analysis and prediction of ADE during hospitalization in the POLAR study"
  • Anne Pepanian (AK Prof. Diana Imhof) with the title "Investigation of potent Gα protein modulators"
  • Jan Hendrik Voß (AK Prof. Christa E. Müller) with the title "My PhD time: 4 years in 10 minutes"

The three young scientists reported confidently and excitingly about their research, experiences and activities at the University of Bonn as well as during their stays abroad. The closing remarks were held by Prof. Alexander Pfeifer, speaker of the Pharma Center Bonn. He thanked all participants, especially the organizers Dorothee Müssemeier and Dr. Amelie Fiene, and invited everyone to a get-together outside with fresh draft beer, which he personally tapped - "o-zapft is"!

Bayer AG Thesis Price 2021
Bayer AG Thesis Price 2021 - f.l.t.r.: Dr. Nils Burkhardt, Dr. Eva Pfeil, Prof. Dr. Evi Kostenis, Dr. Marie Therese Hopp, Prof. Dr. Diana Imhof, Dr. Tim Klapschinki, Prof. Dr. Christa E. Müller © Dorothee Müssemeier
Bayer AG Thesis Price 2021
Bayer AG Thesis Price 2021 - get to know each other © Dorothee Müssemeier
Keynote  speech Prof. Laufer
Keynote speech Prof. Laufer © Dorothee Müssemeier
Tapping beer by Prof. Pfeifer
Tapping beer by Prof. Pfeifer © Dorothee Müssemeier
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