Leonidas Zervas Award 2018


The Leonidas Zervas Award is presented in commemoration of his outstanding contributions to peptide science. The award is given to the scientist who has made the most outstanding contributions to the chemistry, biochemistry and/or biology of peptides in the five years preceding the date of selection, and is sponsored by the donation of Dr. Rao Makineni.

The 2018 awardee is Christian P. R. Hackenberger. Congratulations!


Christian P. R. Hackenberger, born 1976 in Osnabrück, studied chemistry in Freiburg and Madison/WI, where he obtained his M.Sc. 1999 with Samuel H. Gellman. In 2003 he completed his doctoral studies with Carsten Bolm at the RWTH Aachen. After a postdoctoral stay with Barbara Imperiali at MIT he moved in 2005 to the Freie Universität Berlin, where he founded his own research group, supported by the DFG (Emmy-Noether program) and the “Plus 3” award of the Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation. In 2011 he was appointed as associate professor of bioorganic chemistry and in 2012 as the Leibniz-Humboldt professor of Chemical Biology at the Leibniz-Research Institute for Molecular Pharmacology (FMP Berlin) and the Humboldt Universität zu Berlin. Awards include the Heinz-Maier Leibnitz Award from the DFG and the ORCHEM price for young investigators of the GDCh. Christian Hackenberger is the head of the DFG-funded priority program 1623 “Chemoselective reactions for the synthesis and application of functional proteins” as well as an associate editor for Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry (RSC).

His group works on the development new chemoselective and bioorthogonal reactions, in particular Staudinger reactions, as well as novel approaches to peptide and protein synthesis and delivery. In his lab these chemical tools are used for the labeling of clinically relevant antibodies, the structural and functional investigation of the Alzheimer-relevant tau protein, the design of structurally defined multivalent protein scaffolds as well as the functional analysis of labile posttranslational modifications including the phosphorylation of lysine and cysteine.